Stage 15 marked the longest stage of the 2020 Vuelta, fittingly during the longest week for us Americans, at a gruesome 231 kilometres. If the pure distance was not horrendous enough to send a shiver down your spine, then perhaps the weather conditions will be. Battling an aggressive headwind, dense fog, and eventual rain for the duration of the stage, Jasper Philipsen (UAE) prevailed in Puebla de Sanabria. The general classification remained unchanged after race organisers opted to neutralise the final 3 kilometres due to worsening weather conditions.
On what had been an otherwise excruciatingly uneventful Stage 8 turned chaotic and controversial nearly 30 minutes after riders crossed the finish line as the race jury awarded Bora’s Pascal Ackermann the stage victory. On the road, Sam Bennett had claimed his 50th career victory and Deceuninck-Quickstep’s 100th grand tour stage, outfoxing the likes of Ackermann and Gerben Thijssen (Lotto Soudal). Upon discussion, the race jury relegated Bennett for argy-bargy behaviour towards a Trek-Segafredo rider inside the final kilometre. The top ten on general classification remained unchanged.
We’ve waited for more than two weeks but today, the GC finally caught fire at Stage 18 of the Giro d’Italia. On a monster 207km-long stage packed with four categorised climbs, including the famed Passo dello Stelvio, INEOS and Sunweb brought the race to life. After masterful work by teammates, Tao Geoghegan Hart and Jai Hindley were left to battle it out on the final climb for the stage. In the sprint to the line, Hindley sailed to victory. Behind, Hindley’s teammate Wilco Kelderman clawed his way to the finish with only 12 seconds in hand to claim the maglia rosa.