La Vuelta 2019, Stage 13: Bilbao > Los Machucos. Monumento Vaca Pasiega 06/09/2019 - 166.4km *Spo

blazing_saddles
blazing_saddles Posts: 21,959
edited September 2019 in Pro race
La Vuelta 2019, Stage 13: Bilbao > Los Machucos. Monumento Vaca Pasiega 06/09/2019 - 166.4km

The 13th stage of La Vuelta is a war of attrition. Following six intermediate climbs the race finishes atop Los Machucos. It is the first of a troika, which routes the Vuelta through the Cantabrian mountains ahead of a summit finish on the viciously steep ascent of Los Machucos. The Sanctuario del Acebo and Alto de la Cubilla being the other two.

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Los Machucos this time comes as the seventh climb of an already demanding afternoon

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Before the riders tackle Los Machucos, the riders first have to deal with the Alto de la Escrita (5.9km at 4%), Alto de Ubal (7.9km at 6%).


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Collado de Asón (13km at 3.9%). Puerto de Alisas (8.5km at 6%).


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Puerto de Vuenta las Varas (6.3km at 4.5%) and Puerto de la Cruz de Usaño (4.2km at 4.7%).

These a basically just the warm up exercise for a brutal finale. The ultimate climb is narrow and painfully steep. Eventual winner Chris Froome found himself on the back foot, while tackling Los Machucos in 2017.

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This video captures some of the intensity of that day:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySslX_iIS-o

Los Machucos has its origins as a cattle herding track, and the Vuelta road book denotes the finish line as being near the ‘Monumento al Vaca Pasiega’ meaning the ‘Monument to the Pasiega Cow.’
Los Machucos is ‘only’ 880 metres high and 6.8km long, but its special category status is nonetheless richly deserved.
The average gradient of 9.2% tells only part of the story, as the road pitches up to a dizzying 25% inside the opening two kilometres.
The climb is seesawing between ‘rampas inhumanas’ and 10% descents, although the section between kilometre 3 and 6 is more steady with its average gradient of more than 10%. The climb flattens out near the top, while the ultimate kilometre begins with a drop before a false flat last stretch.

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As for who might win this stage, it does look set up to be a probably win from the breakaway, but in terms of the GC, could this be a sign of things to come?

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Favourites 13th stage 2019 Vuelta a España

The odds are that yet another breakaway will make it to the finish, so it's a question of who gets in it and whether they are any good at mountaineering.

*** Mikel Nieve, Dylan Teuns, Wout Poels
** Primoz Roglic, Nairo Quintana, Alejandro Valverde
* Miguel Ángel López, Rafal Majka, Esteban Chaves, Tadej Pogacar, Daniel Felipe Martínez

Bilbao
32 stages of La Vuelta have departed from Bilbao

345,110 inhabitants

Festivals and events.
Bilbao hosts several regular festivals and events. The most relevant is the Big Week of the city (Aste Nagusia), celebrated annually since 1978 and lasting nine days. It is the city's main festival, attracting over 1,500,000 people every year. The festivities begin on the first Saturday before 22 August, and during those nine days the city hall organises a series of cultural events of diverse kind, including concerts, stage plays, Basque rural sports and bullfighting, as well as nightly firework displays. The festivities begin with the chupinazo or txupinazo, which is the launch of a small rocket, and the reading of a proclamation by the festivities' herald. The central point of the festivities is the place around the txosnas, where the different konpartsak are reunited, organised by neighbourhood associations as well as cultural, social and political groups. The symbol of the festivities is Marijaia, a large doll which is burned during the last day of celebrations.

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Crowd control.

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Los Machucos. Monumento Vaca Pasiega
1 stage of La Vuelta have had finale in Los Machucos.
Two years ago in Los Machucos, Stefan Denifl managed the only victory in La Vuelta 2017 for a wildcard team. This was witnessed by the Monumento a la Vaca Pasiega, a monument built on this peak to honour the local cattle species that was long believed to be extinct. The stone cow was a first-hand spectator of the Austrian rider’s victory, who crossed the line flanked by Alberto Contador, second, and minutes later it welcomed the peloton, exhausted after climbing the extremely steep slopes on this mountain pass in the region of Cantabria.

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The models.

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"Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
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Comments

  • bm5
    bm5 Posts: 534
    Red cows in Northern Spain. Doesn't get much better than that.
  • Lumpy.
  • I'm surprised Valverde isn't on the list of favourites, he's still got that kick which could launch him ahead of the others if the breakaway is unsuccessful.
  • Fabio Aru quits yet another Grand Tour.
    Joe Totale wrote:
    I'm surprised Valverde isn't on the list of favourites, he's still got that kick which could launch him ahead of the others if the breakaway is unsuccessful.

    An oversight that I shall rectify. :wink:
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • Be interesting to see if the Movistar riders have an eye on protecting the GC position of each other - conceivably a Quintana attack could put Valverde in trouble - or vice versa but I think Quintana is possibly more suited and on a good day might be able to take time back on Roglic on this one.

    Hopefully we see some GC action from further out than the last climb though I can't really see it - you live in hope though. If Lotto Visma can stay with Roglic onto that last climb you'd think the gradient would make it one he could defend on his own given the steep gradients. If a Quintana or Lopez or Pogacar attacks then even if Roglic is having to cover them himself the ones behind aren't going to be getting it much easier at all sitting on his wheel.
    [Castle Donington Ladies FC - going up in '22]
  • gweeds
    gweeds Posts: 2,576
    Aru abandons.
    Napoleon, don't be jealous that I've been chatting online with babes all day. Besides, we both know that I'm training to be a cage fighter.
  • The family are out there for some of the stages, but are missing today's stage to go on a bit of a ride themselves.
    The reason? Climbing this monster:

    gamoniteiro-profile.png

    Just had a very nice photo of my nephew, on the top. He climbed Covadonga yesterday in the cold and wet, but found it not too bad to climb. I doubt that he feels the same about today's little effort.
    Looks to me as if La Vuelta have been missing a trick.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • Antonio Pedrero (Movistar Team), Pierre Latour, Geoffrey Bouchard, Clément Venturini (AG2R LA Mondiale), Domen Novak (Bahrain-Merida), Felix Grosschartner (Bora-Hansgrohe), Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck-Quick Step), Mitchell Docker, Sergio Higuita (EF Education First), Bruno Armirail (Groupama-FDJ), Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Tsgabu Grmay, Damien Howson (Mitchelton-Scott), Louis Meintjes (Dimension Data), Wout Poels, David de la Cruz (Team Ineos), Steff Cras, Matteo Fabbro, Ruben Guerreiro (Katusha Alpecin), Robert Power, Martijn Tusveld (Team Sunweb), Gianluca Brambilla, Niklas Eg (Trek Segafredo), Angel Madrazo (Burgos-BH), Sergei Chernetskii (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Jesus Herrada, Darwin Atapuma (Cofidis), Mikel Bizkarra and Hector Saez (Euskadi-Murias) are at the front with a lead of 2'35" after 50km.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 73,601
    The family are out there for some of the stages, but are missing today's stage to go on a bit of a ride themselves.
    The reason? Climbing this monster:

    gamoniteiro-profile.png

    Just had a very nice photo of my nephew, on the top. He climbed Covadonga yesterday in the cold and wet, but found it not too bad to climb. I doubt that he feels the same about today's little effort.
    Looks to me as if La Vuelta have been missing a trick.

    Ooof. Tough.
  • m.r.m.
    m.r.m. Posts: 3,366
    The family are out there for some of the stages, but are missing today's stage to go on a bit of a ride themselves.
    The reason? Climbing this monster:

    gamoniteiro-profile.png

    Just had a very nice photo of my nephew, on the top. He climbed Covadonga yesterday in the cold and wet, but found it not too bad to climb. I doubt that he feels the same about today's little effort.
    Looks to me as if La Vuelta have been missing a trick.
    That looks sick! Have the very best time! I'm jealous.
    PTP Champion 2019, 2022 & 2023
  • Looking more and more like the winner will come from the break.
    Higuita currently making big GC gains, but the gap will shrink for sure before the stage ends.

    Héctor Sáez has escaped the breakaway and is building a tidy lead.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • DeadCalm
    DeadCalm Posts: 4,105
    Astana starting to pick it up.
    Team My Man 2022:

    Antwan Tolhoek, Sam Oomen, Tom Dumoulin, Thymen Arensman, Remco Evenepoel, Benoît Cosnefroy, Tom Pidcock, Mark Cavendish, Romain Bardet
  • DeadCalm wrote:
    Astana starting to pick it up.

    Taken back a couple of minutes already and the breakaway boys finesse and Saez rides on.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • Astana making a mockery of the break without losing a single rider, thus far.
    Saez starts the climb with 3 and a quarter minutes.
    The rest have less than 2.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • Astana making a mockery of the break without losing a single rider, thus far.
    Saez starts the climb with 3 and a quarter minutes.
    The rest have less than 2.

    Saez overtaken by Armirail (whohe?)
  • Astana making a mockery of the break without losing a single rider, thus far.
    Saez starts the climb with 3 and a quarter minutes.
    The rest have less than 2.

    They're doing a fantastic job of getting Valverde into the front.
  • Latour is STOMPING RARRR epic ride
  • DeadCalm
    DeadCalm Posts: 4,105
    Allez Pierre!!!
    Team My Man 2022:

    Antwan Tolhoek, Sam Oomen, Tom Dumoulin, Thymen Arensman, Remco Evenepoel, Benoît Cosnefroy, Tom Pidcock, Mark Cavendish, Romain Bardet
  • Omg look at the road BRUTAL with strips in the concrete road on the bend
  • So have ineos gone home then?
  • DeadCalm
    DeadCalm Posts: 4,105
    So have ineos gone home then?
    Were they there?
    Team My Man 2022:

    Antwan Tolhoek, Sam Oomen, Tom Dumoulin, Thymen Arensman, Remco Evenepoel, Benoît Cosnefroy, Tom Pidcock, Mark Cavendish, Romain Bardet
  • They're going to catch him....
  • :lol:
    DeadCalm wrote:
    So have ineos gone home then?
    Were they there?
  • 20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • 20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.

    Now that was a brutal stage. Do you think he’s dodgy?
  • Roglic sprints up hill not looking like hes breathing heavily and recovers instantly. Thats why he’s in Red
  • DeadCalm
    DeadCalm Posts: 4,105
    20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.

    Now that was a brutal stage. Do you think he’s dodgy?
    What is to suggest he is unless you want to suspect anyone who wins?
    Team My Man 2022:

    Antwan Tolhoek, Sam Oomen, Tom Dumoulin, Thymen Arensman, Remco Evenepoel, Benoît Cosnefroy, Tom Pidcock, Mark Cavendish, Romain Bardet
  • 20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.

    She isn't singing yet. Still 8 stages to go. It's been a brutal race.
  • 20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.

    She isn't singing yet. Still 8 stages to go. It's been a brutal race.

    Sure there are 8 stages left and anything is possible.
    However, main threat Lopez hasn't been the same rider since his crash on Sunday and lost a big chunk of time, today.
    Valverde is Roglic's closest rival.
    Nicolas Edet rode in the bunch and still improved his GC position ffs.
    Brian Smith on the breakaway already talking about these guys shifting focus to try and hang onto a podium.
    No Froome here.
    I'd say she's singing quite loudly.

    I also don't think it's been a brutal GT, as the contenders have been pretty selective about where and when they make their effort.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • 20 year old neo-pro is currently the strongest rider in the race.
    Tourism in Slovenia is about to experience an upturn.


    The fat lady decided to sing a week early. It's just a question of who joins Roglic on a distant podium.

    She isn't singing yet. Still 8 stages to go. It's been a brutal race.

    Sure there are 8 stages left and anything is possible.
    However, main threat Lopez hasn't been the same rider since his crash on Sunday and lost a big chunk of time, today.
    Valverde is Roglic's closest rival.
    Nicolas Edet rode in the bunch and still improved his GC position ffs.
    Brian Smith on the breakaway already talking about these guys shifting focus to try and hang onto a podium.
    No Froome here.
    I'd say she's singing quite loudly.

    I also don't think it's been a brutal GT, as the contenders have been pretty selective about where and when they make their effort.

    I agree with all that.