The last mountain stage, the last stage (barring crashes or DNFs) that the final podium could change, the penultimate race day of the 2020 Vuelta and the men’s pro cycling season. We expected fireworks and in a way we got them, although it felt like a slow nervous breakdown watching the final 3km of the GC race. But up ahead, FDJ’s David Gaudu took another Vuelta stage, with NTT’s Gino Mader and Ion Izagirre (Astana) second and third in the stage. Ineos’s Richard Carapaz had one more roll of the dice, which resulted in the most nail-biting three kilometres since … the Giro! With Primoz Roglic alone, under pressure and not looking his effervescent self, the fear was that he was going to lose another Grand Tour (in the same season!) on the penultimate stage. But he dug deep, rode on fumes and mental strength, and limited his losses to save the red jersey for Madrid.
It was Stage 2 of the Vuelta a Espana and, like yesterday, the riders were not hanging around. Lots of attackity action, fast riding on the front and a solo victory that came out of a cheeky attack from the red jersey group. Movistarlet Marc Soler rode to a fine solo win, while Primoz Roglic wasn’t giving anything away to the rivals around him and picked up extra seconds as he sprinted for second.
Lots of great racing so far this weekend – we had quite unexpected wins from non-sprinters (both from QuickStep, doncha know …), an unbelievably spectacular and emotional Women’s CX World Championship race, and a Movistar Mallorcan win