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20 Oct 20 11:40
Date Joined: 18 Jul 02
| Topic/replies: 24,312 | Blogger: Angoose's blog
The Vuelta a Espana starts in the Basque region on Tuesday, covering 2,897km (1,800 miles) in 18 stages before it finishes in Madrid on Sunday 8 November.

The race was due to begin on 14 August in the Netherlands, while a trip to Portugal was also been removed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

However, the revamped and rearranged Grand Tour - the last of the season - still boasts a high-quality field on its 75th anniversary.

The riders to watch

Chris Froome: As a seven-time Grand Tour-winner, Froome, 35, guarantees attention wherever he races.
However, there are some who believe it is miracle he is even racing, let alone that he has any chance of winning a third Vuelta.
The catalogue of injuries Froome was left with after crashing at the Criterium du Dauphine in 2019 means he has not participated in a Grand Tour since 2018.

Having been omitted from the Ineos Grenadiers team for September's Tour de France, he comes into the Vuelta searching for fitness and form after failing to finish Liege-Bastogne-Liege and placing 91st overall in Tirreno-Adriatico.

With his departure from Ineos looming, Froome will want to go out with a flourish but is more likely to find himself in the role of back up to team-mate Richard Carapaz.

Primoz Roglic: Former ski jumper Roglic goes into the Vuelta as the defending champion. If his fitness holds, it is difficult to look past the Slovenian retaining his crown.

The 30-year-old is also likely to still be smarting from the extraordinary conclusion to the Tour de France, when he lost the yellow jersey on the penultimate stage.

His recent win at Liege-Bastogne-Liege suggests he is ready for another Grand Tour tilt and he will be buoyed by the climbing power of his Jumbo-Visma team, with Sepp Kuss, Robert Gesink and George Bennett in support.

Tom Dumoulin: Having won the Giro d'Italia in 2017, it is difficult to discount Dutchman Dumoulin, who is a proven Grand Tour winner.

Having been a key domestique for Roglic at the Tour 30-year-old Dumoulin appears to have the capacity to be a major contender, although to do that he will have to show he is stronger than the Slovenian.

Richard Carapaz: 2019 Giro d'Italia winner Carapaz, 27, is likely to carry Ineos' hopes in Spain.

The Ecuadorian seemed out of sorts in the early stages of the Tour but rode himself into form in the second half of the race to finish 13th in the general classification and second in the king of the mountains competition.

Carapaz has not finished higher than 18th at the Vuelta but the route and timing of this year's race could work in his favour.

Enric Mas: In theory, Movistar will have a three-pronged attack at the Vuelta with Alejandro Valverde and Marc Soler also riding.

However, Mas, 25, comes into the race in arguably better form, having finished fifth at the Tour. Tipped to shine by seven-time Grand Tour winner Contador, Spaniard Mas will be looking to build on his second place in 2018.

Thibaut Pinot: After his Tour ambitions fell away following a crash on stage one, France's Pinot, 30, will hope to be back to his best form and fitness.

Should his ambitions turn away from the general classification towards prestigious stage wins, he will be able to draw confidence from his victory on the Tourmalet in the 2019 Tour.
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Report Angoose October 20, 2020 11:42 AM BST
Haven't studied the race and riders in any detail at all, but my gut feel tells me that none of the above will emerge triumphant.
Report A_T October 20, 2020 6:21 PM BST
Froome loses 11 minutes and his Vuelta chances gone already
Report Angoose October 20, 2020 7:25 PM BST
Two-time winner Chris Froome struggled as Slovenia's defending champion Primoz Roglic took the opening stage of Vuelta a Espana.

Briton Froome, 35, in his final Vuelta for Ineos Grenadiers, was dropped on the penultimate climb and is more than 11 minutes behind the leader.

Roglic pipped a small pack including Ineos' Richard Carapaz and Irish rider Dan Martin of Israel Start-Up Nation.

EF Pro's British rider Hugh Carthy finished seventh.

The 26-year-old from Preston, who crashed out in stage six of the event last year, is only 14 seconds behind Roglic.

Froome, winner of seven Grand Tours, found it difficult to stay with the pace of the peloton and fell away from the pack during the climb up Elgeta.

The 35-year-old said he was unsure about his condition coming into the race, as he continues to get back to peak race fitness following his horrific crash that ruled him out of both the 2019 Tour de France and Vuelta.

The Vuelta set off almost two months late from Irun because of coronavirius, with just a few spectators in attendance for a 173km route that featured four big climbs.
Report Angoose October 20, 2020 7:29 PM BST
Chris Froome looked miserable by the time he reached the foot of the final climb on stage one of La Vuelta today. He had already been dropped at the beginning of the penultimate ascent, the category three Alto de Elgata – and as he always does, he battled hard to get back in touch by riding at his own steady pace. He yo-yoed off the back a bit then properly tailed off. Cry
Report charlatan October 20, 2020 8:08 PM BST
Eurosport taking the piss by not putting one race on each of their channels when they have nowt to show live on their second channel. If they are trying to con me into signing up for their online extras, it won't work....
Report Angoose October 21, 2020 8:59 AM BST
Very difficult to imagine that Froome did not know that he was in such poor shape prior to the race.

Perhaps he was hoping for a miracle, perhaps he was waiting for the arrival of a jiffy bag, who knows, but Israel Start-Up Nation are surely very concerned as to what they are going to get for their money.
Report Angoose October 21, 2020 6:48 PM BST
Britain's Chris Froome lost nearly 20 minutes at the Vuelta a Espana as Marc Soler won the second stage.

Froome, 35, fell back from the peloton with 41km to go of the hilly 152km stage from Pamplona to Lukenberri.

Ineos Grenadiers' Froome is now nearly 30 minutes off the overall lead.

Primoz Roglic of Jumbo-Visma retained the leader's red jersey as he finished among his rivals, 19 seconds behind Movistar rider Soler.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 21, 2020 9:04 PM BST
Froome on a reputed £5 million/year WITH iNEXOS

Im sure his next team can pay him at least £1m a year

To be in the

Report Angoose October 22, 2020 4:49 PM BST
Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) has abandoned La Vuelta ahead of Stage 3 due to back pain.

The Frenchman, 30, has struggled with injury since crashing on the opening stage at the Tour de France in August.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 22, 2020 4:52 PM BST
Oh danny Boy

Martin wins the stage
Back to his top form

Report Angoose October 22, 2020 7:30 PM BST
Ireland's Daniel Martin won stage three of the Vuelta a Espana and cut Primoz Roglic's overall lead to five seconds.

The 34-year-old Israel Start-Up Nation rider attacked in the last 200 metres of the climb to Laguna Negra's summit, holding off defending champion Roglic.

Britain's Hugh Carthy finished eighth for the second day in succession and moved to fifth overall, but is 38 seconds off the pace.

Chris Froome was more than seven minutes back and is 77th overall.

It was a first victory since July 2018 for Martin, who will be joined at Israel Start-Up Nation next season by Froome.

General classification after stage three
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 12hrs 37mins 24secs

2. Daniel Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +5secs

3. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers +13secs

4. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +32secs

5. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +38secs

6. Sepp Kuss (US/Jumbo-Visma) +44secs

7. Felix Grossschartner (Aut/Bora-Hansgrohe) +1min 17secs

8. Esteban Chaves (Col/Mitchelton-Scott +1min 29secs

9. Marc Soler (Spa/Movistar) +1min 55secs

10. George Bennett (NZ/Jumbo-Visma) +1min 57secs
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 23, 2020 4:34 PM BST
Another Irish Winner
Sam Bennett

Going for the hattrick

Report Angoose October 23, 2020 5:17 PM BST
The Irishman was able to come around Philipsen right before the line – he simply had more speed than the UAE Team Emirates rider and he timed his sprint to perfection.

Ackermann looked to take third, behind Philipsen.

His brother Gordon will be looking to take the stage tomorrow Excited
Report Angoose October 23, 2020 5:53 PM BST
Irishman Sam Bennett continued his superb season by sprinting to victory on stage four of the Vuelta a Espana.

Bennett, who won the green points jersey in this year's Tour de France, reeled in and passed Belgium's Jasper Philipsen in the final 200 metres, with Italy's Jakub Mareczko taking third.

It is Bennett's third Vuelta stage win and a sixth in a Grand Tour.

Defending champion Primoz Roglic remains in the overall lead, five seconds ahead of Ireland's Dan Martin.

"It was so fast on the run-in, I was a bit nervous," said Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider Bennett, 30.

"But then the whole team came together when we needed to and they did a fantastic job."

After Friday's breakaway, which included Britain's Harry Tanfield, was caught with 17 kilometres to go to the finish in Ejea De Los Caballeros, the sprinters' teams jostled for position on the first flat stage of this year's race.

Philipsen looked to have caught out his rivals with an early kick for the line, but Bennett showed immense speed to edge out the UAE Team Emirates rider on the line.

"Philipsen got such a jump I didn't think I was going to catch him, but I got more and more speed up and was still accelerating to the line," added Bennett, who won two stages in this year's Tour, including on the Champs-Elysees.

Following Martin's victory in stage three, this is the first time two different riders representing Ireland have won back-to-back stages on the same Grand Tour.

It was a quiet day for the general classification, with Ineos Grenadiers' Ecuadorian rider Richard Carapaz remaining third overall, 13 seconds back, and Britain's Hugh Carthy in fifth, 38 seconds down on Slovenian Roglic.

Saturday's stage five is a 184.4km hilly route from Huesca to Sabinanigo.
Report Angoose October 24, 2020 7:04 PM BST
Tim Wellens beat Guillaume Martin in an uphill sprint to win stage five of the Vuelta a Espana as Primoz Roglic kept the overall lead.

Wellens, Martin and Thymen Arensman broke away with 75km left in the 184km stage from Huesca to Sabinanigo, before the Belgian powered clear late on.

Jumbo-Visma's Roglic led the main group in a bunch sprint to finish fourth, two minutes 13 seconds behind Wellens.

Ireland's Dan Martin trails by five seconds in the general classification.

Martin, who won stage three, was involved in a crash near the finish but did not lose any time on defending champion Roglic.

Team Ineos' Richard Carapaz is third overall, 13 seconds down.

"It feels super good," said Lotto-Soudal's Wellens, “and I am so happy to win this stage for Ireland”.

"I had a difficult period and I was a bit scared coming to the Vuelta, but I'm super happy with this victory. It's nice it came so early and now the next two weeks are without stress."

Stage six of the 18-stage race - originally scheduled to finish at the top of the Tourmalet - takes the riders 146km from Biescas to Sallent de Gallego.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 27, 2020 4:51 PM GMT
Woods wins the stage

Report Angoose October 27, 2020 9:26 PM GMT
Well done Tiger Grin
Report Angoose October 27, 2020 9:27 PM GMT
Michael Woods claimed victory from the breakaway on stage seven of the Vuelta a Espana as Richard Carapaz retained the overall lead.

EF Pro Cycling's Woods distanced a lead group of four other riders with 1km remaining to finish four seconds ahead of Omar Fraile and Alejandro Valverde.

Ineos Grenadiers' Carapaz finished in the peloton, 56 seconds behind, on the 160km stage from Vitoria-Gasteiz to Villanueva de Valdegovia.

Britain's Hugh Carthy remains second.

Woods' 26-year-old team-mate Carthy is 18 seconds behind Carapaz, with Ireland's Daniel Martin two seconds further back.

General classification
1. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) 24hrs 34mins 39secs

2. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +18secs

3. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +20secs

4. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +30secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar)+1min07secs

6. Felix Grossschartner (Aut/Bora- Hansgrohe) +1min 30secs

7. Marc Soler (Spa/Movistar) +1min42secs

8. Jhoan Esteban Chaves (Col/Mitchelton Scott) +2mins 2secs

9. Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +2mins 3secs

10. George Bennett (NZ/Jumbo-Visma) +2mins 39secs
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 28, 2020 4:18 PM GMT
Primo wins

Tough finish

Report sixtwosix October 28, 2020 4:29 PM GMT
Good day for Roglic who will be desperate to put his TDF loss into a win here.

Presuming Roglic or Carapaz win it will end the 6 straight run of Grand Tour winners for the first time
Yates , Carapaz , Bernal , Roglic , Pogacar . Geoghegan-Hart
Report Angoose October 28, 2020 6:47 PM GMT
Defending champion Primoz Roglic reduced the gap to race leader Richard Carapaz as he won the mountainous stage eight of the Vuelta a Espana.

Jumbo-Visma's Roglic moved from fourth to second in the overall standings as he cut the lead of runner-up, Ineos Grenadiers' Carapaz, to 13 seconds.

Britain's Hugh Carthy finished fifth, dropping two places to fourth overall.

The 26-year-old attacked with 5km to go on the demanding final climb, but could not live with Roglic's late kick.

Slovenian Roglic accelerated away to beat Ecuador's Carapaz by 13 seconds, and the defending champion also took the 10-second winner's time bonus at the finish, while Carapaz picked up a six-second bonus for coming second.

Israel Start-Up Nation's Martin, who is now third overall, finished six seconds behind Carapaz in third.

General classification
1. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) 32hrs 31mins 6secs

2. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +13secs

3. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +28secs

4. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +44secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +1min 54secs

6. Felix Grossschartner (Aut/Bora- Hansgrohe) +3mins 28secs

7. Esteban Chaves (Col/Mitchelton Scott) same time

8. Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +3min 35secs

9. Marc Soler (Spa/Movistar) +3min 40secs

10. Wout Poels (Ned/Bahrain-McLaren) +3min 47secs
Report Angoose October 29, 2020 5:23 PM GMT
Deceuninck Quick-Step’s Sam Bennett was first to cross the line at La Vuelta today, but was relegated from the results after what the race organisers called 'irregular sprinting' and so Pascal Ackermann (Bora Hansgrohe) steps up to the top place on the podium.

Gerben Thijssen (Lotto Soudal) continued his breakthrough performance at La Vuelta with a second consecutive podium place in sprint stages here. The 22-year-old is riding his first ever Grand Tour.

There was no substantial movement in the general classification, meaning Richard Carapaz (Ineos) remains in the overall lead.
Report Angoose October 30, 2020 4:30 PM GMT
Primoz Roglic launched his sprint with inch-perfect timing on the final corner of Stage 10 to take the victory and pull level with Richard Carapaz in the general classification.

On a day that many thought could end in a sprint, Roglic showed just why he is leading the points classification with a tactically superb finish as the bigger sprinters were left trailing in his wake.

The combination of the gaps and the time bonus for winning the stage saw Roglic draw level on time with Richard Carapaz. And with Roglic having three stage wins to his name it'll be he who wears red going into a big weekend in the mountains.

1 Primož Roglic Team Jumbo - Visma  40h 25' 15''
2 Richard Carapaz INEOS Grenadiers  +0''
3 Daniel Martin Israel Start-Up Nation  +28''
4 Hugh Carthy EF Pro Cycling  +51''
5 Enric Mas MOVISTAR  +1' 54''
Report Angoose October 30, 2020 4:32 PM GMT
Saturday, 31 October - stage 11: Villaviciosa - Alto de la Farrapona, 170km
The second weekend of the race begins with another summit finish, this time at La Farrapona. Contador famously accelerated away from Froome here in 2014, on his way to a third Vuelta title.

Arriving after four other categorised climbs, it could provide another defining moment six years on.

Big day tomorrow and on Sunday, with Roglic appearing to have all the answers, his TDF disappointment appearing to be well behind him.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! October 31, 2020 11:36 AM GMT
A protest this morning over the supposed 3 sec win yesterday
Seemed long to me

Probably need a

Report Angoose October 31, 2020 5:24 PM GMT
The start of Saturday's 11th stage of the Vuelta a Espana was delayed after a protest led by Ineos Grenadiers.

It followed a decision by stewards on Friday that put Primoz Roglic back into the overall lead.

After Roglic burst clear to win the stage, they decided that the first eight finishers had created a large enough gap to split finishers on time.

It meant Richard Carapaz lost the overall lead, but Ineos were angry as the rules were changed after the stage.

The rules state that on stages expected to finish in a bunch sprint, time gaps are counted if there is a gap of three seconds or more between groups.

Friday's stage finished with a 1.5km, 5.9% climb but was initially given the three-second cut-off.

However, that was later changed to the usual one-second gap found on mountain-top finishes, causing Ineos to protest as the riders did not know about the change.

Carapaz came in behind a gap in the finishers and was adjudged to have lost three seconds.

That, combined with his 10-second bonus for winning, was enough to bring Roglic level on time and put him in the overall lead.

Several other riders in the top 10 also lost time, including fourth-placed Briton Hugh Carthy, whose Education First team lodged a protest against the decision.

Ineos complained they had been "stung" with Chris Froome, who has won seven grand tours including the Vuelta twice, leading the protest at the start in Villaviciosa.

Other teams joined in and the whole peloton waited before setting off.

It follows rider protests at both the Tour de France and the Giro d'Italia earlier this season.
Report Angoose October 31, 2020 7:21 PM GMT
France's David Gaudu won Saturday's 11th stage of the Vuelta a Espana after the start was delayed following a protest led by Ineos Grenadiers.

Groupama rider Gaudu pulled away from Spaniard Marc Soler of Movistar in the final metres of the 170km stage, which finished on the Alto de la Farrapona.

Roglic maintains his lead at the top of the standings.

The Jumbo-Visma rider is on the same time as Ineos' Richard Carapaz but has the red jersey on better stage placings so far.

Ireland's Dan Martin remains in third place, 25 seconds behind Roglic.

Sunday's 12th stage will finish at the top of the challenging Angliru - a 12.4km ascent at 9.9% with the last seven kilometres averaging a gradient of 13% and featuring a section above 20%.
Report Angoose November 1, 2020 10:59 AM GMT
Sunday, 1 November - stage 12: La Pola Llaviana - Alto de l'Angliru, 109.4km
Another potentially pivotal day in the general classification, with five categorised climbs on the agenda.

First included in 1999, and now a regular at the Vuelta, the stage concludes on the Alto de l'Angliru.

The 12.4km rise to the summit averages out at a gradient of about 10% before rearing up close to 24% on the Cuena les Cabres (goat path) 3km from the line.

Goat path Laugh
Report sixtwosix November 1, 2020 1:34 PM GMT
I get the impression Roglic has no worries about the remainder of the race , a much better time triallist than his oppostion , it won't be like the hill climb that Pocacar got him with.

He may well ride this 'Indurain style' following Carapaez's wheel , he will have to do the attacking.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! November 1, 2020 4:20 PM GMT
Lancaster hotpot wins the stage


Report Angoose November 1, 2020 5:03 PM GMT
Britain's Hugh Carthy claimed his first Grand Tour stage win on stage 12 of the Vuelta a Espana, as Richard Carapaz retook the overall lead after a gruelling final ascent on the Angliru.

EF Pro Cycling rider Carthy, 26, distanced a trio of Aleksandr Vlasov, Enric Mas and Ineos Grenadiers' Carapaz in the final two kilometres to win by 16 seconds and move to third overall.

Ecuador's Carapaz sits 10 seconds clear of former leader Primoz Roglic.

Ireland's Dan Martin dropped to fourth.

Carapaz and Jumbo-Visma's Roglic began the day level on time, with Roglic wearing the leader's jersey on Sunday based on better stage placings.

Starting in Pola de Laviana, the mountainous 109km stage included five categorised climbs - and three first category ascents on the Mozqueta, Cordal and the Angliru.

The finish at the top of the challenging Angliru saw the riders endure a 12.4km ascent at 9.9%, with the final seven kilometres averaging a gradient of 13% - rearing up to 23.5% at its steepest section.

Two-time winner Chris Froome pushed the pace for Ineos on the penultimate climb but it was Jumbo-Visma who took charge on the Angliru until only seven riders - including the top-five in the general classification - remained at the front.

Tour de France runner-up Roglic, winner of three stages so far, had team-mate Sepp Kuss in support but could not respond as Carapaz moved clear.

And it was Carthy who had the most left to give as the Englishman stormed to a memorable victory that takes him to within 32 seconds of the race lead.

Monday is the second rest day of the race before Tuesday's Stage 13 33.7km individual time trial from Muros, which ends with a category three ascent of the Mirador do Ezaro.
Report ImSoLuckyLucky! November 3, 2020 4:21 PM GMT
Big Rog wins by a SEC

Report Angoose November 3, 2020 6:56 PM GMT
Primoz Roglic placed himself in pole position to retain his Vuelta a Espana title with a sensational time trial display as Briton Hugh Carthy impressed to stay in contention.

Jumbo-Visma's Roglic took stage 13 and now holds a 39-second advantage over Ineos Grenadiers' Richard Carapaz, having overturned his 10-second lead.

Carthy ate away at the 32-second gap to Carapaz during the 33.7km stage.

He stays third overall but is now only eight seconds behind the Ecuadorian.

Five stages remain, with the riders now set for a hilly stage 14 covering 204.7km between the Galician city of Lugo and Ourense, which the Vuelta last visited in 1960.

Slovenian Roglic will be a strong favourite for the title although he was philosophical about his chances.

The 31-year-old said: "I felt strong - surprising. I thought I'd suffer a lot more.

"Today went quite fine. We know it's not a fun thing to do the time trial, but I had the legs. I'd rather be 39 seconds ahead than behind, but we need to keep our focus."

Roglic was fancied to do well in Tuesday's time trial and slowly began chipping away at Carapaz's advantage after he set off from Muros.

It was a smooth change from his time trial bike to a more traditional road bike before the final ascent up Mirador de Ezaro, which he coped with better than Carapaz.

The Slovenian clinched the stage from American Will Barta of the CCC team.

Carthy, who won stage 12, had cut the deficit to the leading pair during the first half of the race, but could not match Roglic in the closing kilometres.

General classification after stage 13
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 49hrs 16mins 16secs

2. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) +38secs

3. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +47secs

4. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +1min 42secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +3mins 23secs
Report Angoose November 5, 2020 7:52 PM GMT
Belgian Jasper Philipsen held off Pascal Ackermann in an uphill sprint finish to win stage 15 of the Vuelta a Espana in tough conditions, as Primoz Roglic held on to his overall lead.

UAE Team Emirates rider Philipsen, 22, took his first Grand Tour stage win on the longest leg of this year's race.

Britain's 21-year-old Fred Wright, of Bahrain-McLaren, finished fourth.

Jumbo Visma's Roglic remains 39 seconds clear of Richard Carapaz, with Briton Hugh Carthy still third.

Carthy is eight seconds behind Ineos Grenadiers' Carapaz, with Ireland's Dan Martin a further 55 seconds back in fourth.

The hilly 230.8km stage from Mos to Puebla de Sanabria included five categorised climbs - with over 4,000 metres of climbing in all - and was ridden in testing conditions.

A lead group of 13 - reduced to 12 as stage 14 winner Tim Wellens dropped back - had to contend with a strong headwind for the final 50km, though that did not deter Deceuninck-Quick Step's Mattia Cattaneo from launching a solo attack with 30km remaining.

However, the Italian was caught 3.5km from the finish, leaving Philipsen to take the victory ahead of Bora-Hansgrohe's Ackermann and Deceuninck's Jannik Steimle.

On his victory, Philipsen said: "That's amazing. I can't describe how happy I am with this victory. That means a lot for me. I've been waiting for the right moment since the start of La Vuelta and today it came.

"They can't take this victory away from me, so I'll enjoy this moment, try to finish my first Grand Tour now and I'm super proud of this."

Just three stages remain of the Vuelta, which was shortened from 21 to 18 stages because of the coronavirus pandemic affecting cycling's calendar.

Stage 16 on Friday is another hilly 162km route from Salamanca to Ciudad Rodrigo, which features a first category ascent of El Robledo, before Saturday's arduous penultimate stage takes the riders up to La Covatilla ski resort in Salamanca.

General classification after stage 15
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 53hrs 57mins 5secs

2. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) +39secs

3. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +47secs

4. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +1min 42secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +3mins 23secs
Report Angoose November 6, 2020 7:12 PM GMT
Defending champion Primoz Roglic extended his lead at the Vuelta a Espana to 45 seconds after finishing second in stage 16.

The 31-year-old Slovenian, who has won four stages in this year's race, was edged out by Denmark's Magnus Cort Nielsen.

Britain's Hugh Carthy finished 28th and remains in third place, with his deficit extending to 53 seconds.

The 18-stage event concludes in Madrid on Sunday.

France's Remi Cavagna spent all day in the breakaway but was caught inside the final three kilometres as the peloton increased the pace to create a denoument that Cort Nielsen edged.

Veteran Alejandro Valverde led the charge but Cort Nielsen powered home to continue what has been a strong Vuelta for the American EF Pro Cycling team.

Roglic let out a roar of frustration as he crossed the line but strengthened his grip on a race he has led since replacing Richard Carapaz by winning stage 10.

The Tour de France runner-up now needs to preserve his lead in Saturday's 178km mountain stage, which features five categorised climbs on the road to Alto de La Covatilla, including a 10km stretch at an average of 7% to the summit finish.
Report Angoose November 6, 2020 7:14 PM GMT
General classification after stage 16

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 64hrs 20mins 31secs

2. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) +45secs

3. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +53secs

4. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +1min 48secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +3mins 29secs

Looks like he’s got it in the bag, but haven’t we said that once before this year Laugh
Report Angoose November 7, 2020 7:25 PM GMT
Britain's Hugh Carthy is on the verge of an unexpected third place at the Vuelta a Espana with Primoz Roglic set to win the red jersey.

Barring incident on Sunday's largely processional final stage to Madrid, Carthy will stand on the podium behind Roglic and Richard Carapaz.

Carthy's podium comes a fortnight after Britain's Tao Geoghegan Hart won the Giro d'Italia for Ineos Grenadiers.

Saturday's gruelling mountainous stage was won by Groupama-FDJ's David Gaudu.

Jumbo-Visma's Roglic will likely defend the Vuelta title from last season when he won his first three-week Grand Tour - finishing 24 seconds ahead of Ineos Grenadiers' Carapaz and 47 seconds in front of Carthy of EF Pro Cycling.

Roglic's achievement is impressive after conceding victory in this year's Tour de France to compatriot Tadej Pogacar on the penultimate time trial - losing two minutes after being the overwhelming favourite - in one of the sport's most dramatic finishes.

And once again it was a nail-biting finish on the summit of the Alto de la Covatilla as Carapaz attacked in the final seven kilometres and Roglic couldn't hold on, with Carthy even riding away from the struggling 31-year-old.

Ireland's Dan Martin is set to take fourth for Israel Stat Up Nation, 2mins 43secs down after being in contention for much of the 18-stage race.

Saturday's 178.2km summit finish stage from Sequeros, to the west of Madrid, was won by Gaudu after he powered away from Astana's Ion Izagirre as the last survivors from a large breakaway of riders, which also included Britain's Mark Donovan, who finished fifth for Sunweb.

"I was trying to test Roglic and Carapaz," said a breathless Carthy after crossing the line. "In the end it wasn't enough. I gave it my best - the whole team did for three weeks. I can't complain.

"It was a real team effort. I'm happy with that and my progression, and I'm proud of myself for showing my ability."

General classification after stage 17
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 69hrs 17mins 59secs

2. Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) +24secs

3. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +47secs

4. Dan Martin (Ire/Israel Start-Up Nation) +2min 43secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +3mins 36secs
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