Lead Photo by GomezSport
So we move on to the last Grand Tour of 2019. The overall OTRL is possibly as open as the overall favourite for the Vuelta and there is still the spot prize to play for for any lurkers or new members out there. Please join our merry little band!
The final standings for 2018 Vuelta were:
- Simon Yates
- Enric Mas
- Miguel Angel Lopez
- Steven Kruijswijk
- Alejandro Valverde
One thing is for sure, we will not be seeing a repeat for the Yates brothers as neither is riding this year. Lopez, Kruijswijk and the “evergreen” Valverde are still in the mix and add in Roglic, Carapaz, Quintana (well with TTT on day 1, he may have some minutes to make up right from the start, again), Uran and Majka plus throw in the unexpected and hopefully we are in for some good racing over the next few weeks.
The 9th stage could be key with a short stage of 94,4 kilometres venturing into the Pyrenees over three passes – Coll d’Ordino (17.6 kilometres at 5.4%), Coll de la Gallina (11.8 kilometres at 8.3%) and the final pull up Cortals d’Encamp (13.2 kilometres at 7.3%). Could be an interesting mix of those going for GC and anyone (Quintana?) going for a solo stage win. Followed by a rest day and then an ITT which is similar to, but longer than, the TdF ITT any Grimpeur going for a GC is surely going to have to try to gain a shed load of time over, for instance, Roglic.
Time to stare into these crystal balls and make your picks (open from Monday).
Details of the route and riders can be found here.