Tour of Spain – Carapaz the 14th stage, Evenepoel distanced, Roglic is back

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The Vuelta is restarted! While we thought Remco Evenepoel (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) untouchable, the Belgian showed his first signs of weakness this Saturday in the final climb of the Sierra de La Pandera, term of the 14th stage. A climb that saw the second victory in three days for Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers), from the morning breakaway and author of a great number to resist the return of the favorites – and in particular of Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) – in the last kilometers. Back in great shape, the Slovenian placed a sharp attack 4 terminals from the top which made the red jersey bend then Enric Mas (Movistar). Third 8″ from the Ecuadorian on the line, the three-time defending champion takes up 28 and 48 seconds respectively – plus 4 bonuses – on the Spaniard and Evenepoelwho keeps his jersey but sees his rival return to 1’49” overall.

Video – Carapaz for the double, Roglic recovers 52 “from Evenepoel

A big battle of 70 km for the breakaway, 10 men at the front including Carapaz

The majority of the difficulties being concentrated in the last 60 kilometers, the 14th stage begins with a long flat section on which the attackers are engaged in a fierce battle to take the breakaway, which still has a very good chance of going to the end this Saturday. . The pace is extremely fast and despite numerous attempts, no one can tell the difference after more than 60 kilometers and more than an intense hour of racing! We even witness a break in the peloton for a time, with in particular the 5th overall Juan Ayuso trapped in a second group. But everything is back to normal after a few minutes of a hunt led by his team. UAE Team Emirates.

We finally have to wait for km 75 to see the breakaway of the day form, initially with 8 riders. Clement Champoussin (AG2R Citroën Team), Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Qazaqstan Team), Luis Leon Sanchez (Bahrain Victorious), Bruno Armirail (Groupama-FDJ), Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers), Filippo Conca (Lotto Soudal), Kenny Elisson and Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) take off but are very quickly joined by a counter of two men, Raul Garcia Pierna (Equipo Kern Pharma) and Marco Brenner (DSM-Team). Already less than 85 miles from the finish, the peloton let this group of 10 in which Carapaz, already winner two days ago, is the favorite. But after quickly climbing to 3’30”, the gap stabilizes until the foot of the first bump of the day, the Puerto de Siete Pilillas (60 km remaining).

Gap stabilized at 4 minutes, Mads Pedersen consolidates his green jersey

The package is then taken away by the team Quick-Step Alpha Vinylwho seems to want to control the lead of the runaways for an explanation between leaders and a potential second victory of Remco Evenepoel. The pass is nevertheless climbed at a faster pace by the leading men, Carapaz crossing its summit the first with 4 minutes of margin. The 30 kilometers that follow before approaching the sequence of the two final ascents are hilly and leave no respite to the runners. Mads Pedersen take advantage of the intermediate sprint located at Jaén (33 km remaining) to take 20 more points and consolidate his green jersey, now 171 points ahead of his runner-up in the standings, Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates). Note the abandonment of Kelland O’Brienthe 3rd for the Team BikeExchange – Jayco from the start.

The breakaway attacks in the 1st climb, the Jumbo sets off behind

The gap is unchanged up to 23 terminals from the line and the foot of the penultimate ascent, the Puerto de Los Villares (10.4 km at 5.5%), which will be directly followed by the Sierra de La Pandera (8.4 km at 7.8%) for nearly 23 kilometers of almost continuous climbing. In view of the program to come, the chances of victory for the breakaways are slim, unless there is a great feat. Their lead is reduced to 3 minutes from the first hectometres of the climb. The best climbers therefore decide not to wait to launch hostilities. Under the impulsion of Lutsenkoa group of 5 with Carapaz, Champoussin, Sanchez and Conca emerges at the front.

This acceleration has the merit of allowing the leading quintet to quickly regain 45″ from the pack. At 15 terminals from the goal, Elisson, Armory and Garcia Pierna manage to come back and reform a group of 8. Within the peloton, Esteban Chaves (EF Education-Easy-Post) tries a timid attack, but the Colombian is quickly taken back by the Jumbo Vismawhich comes to print a sustained rhythm with Robert Gesink. Up front, the situation remains very lively, and it is Luis Leon Sanchez who finally passes alone at the top of the Puerto de los Villares with about fifteen seconds ahead of Carapaz, Champoussin, Lutsenko, Elissonde and Conca. The peloton is at 2’40”.

Carapaz goes solo, Roglic attacks at 4 km, Evenepoel in pain!

On the short descending false flat that leads to the justice of the day, the Sierra de La Pandera, Richard Carapaz feels good and jumps on Sanchez ! The two men hit it off straight away and dig in on their pursuers. From the first ramps, Clement Champoussin also makes the effort to operate the junction, soon imitated by Filippo Conca. This quartet will not have to drag along the way since it is now the Movistar and Alejandro Valverde who take control of the peloton, then relayed by Chris Harper (Jumbo-Visma). The gap falls irremediably and is only one minute at 4 kilometers from the finish, while the steepest slopes (15% max) arise.

After a big stint of Ilan Van Wilder, Primoz Roglic take responsibility and attack! The Slovenian seems strong and goes solo. Behind, Enric Mas and Miguel Angel Lopez lead the hunt, while Remco Evenepoel does not seem as airy as usual. The red jersey also cracks more than 3 terminals from the top! In difficulty, the Belgian gives up a lot of ground and is left behind by all his rivals. About 3 kilometers from the summit, he is already more than 40″ behind the trio Roglic, mas and Lopez. Same Juan Ayusothough the victim of a puncture, manages to come back and drop the overall leader, who could lose big!

Carapaz resists and offers the double, Roglic 3rd at 8″, Mas and Evenepoel lose time

If a real turning point The Vuelta is played between the favorites, Richard Carapaz performs a real number on the front! The Ecuadorian isolated himself after 3 km and manages to maintain a 15-second lead over the group RoglicWho loses mas on a new acceleration of the triple defending champion before the red flame. From the latter, a flat area leads the runners to the line, Carapaz therefore resists without worries and ends up sprinting to achieve a double in the space of 2 days! The Olympic champion leads by 8″ Lopez and Roglic. Enric Mas cracked and only finished 6th at 36″. Evenepoel finally limited the breakage well and finished in 8th place with Ayusoat 56″, i.e. 48″ conceded to Roglic.


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