La Vuelta – Stage 13 Preview

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 23.41.42The riders have another day riding along the coast.They travel 169km from Valls to Castelldefels.

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 23.42.57We have a 1st cat climb that crests with 50km to the finish.This will remove the sprinters and we should see a sprint between the climbers.

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 23.44.36The climb is very tough,with 4.3km at an average of 10.6%.This will slim the peloton down quite considerably.

Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 18.41.50The riders have to tackle a big loop around 500 metres before the finishing line.

Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 18.46.38As you can see the final 400 metres rises quite sharply,I can’t get an exact figure but it looks around the 9% mark.

Team tactics will play an enormous part in this stage.

The cat 1 climb is very steep but only around 4km.Will we see the peloton go over it quickly or will they take it easy?With 50km to go till the finish we could see some attacks but it does seem a bit far out to survive.

The sprint teams will be lacking numbers and a late attack might not be brought back,as in previous stages.

The steep finish favours Gilbert,Moreno and a few others.

We also have to consider the morning break,as the cat 1 climb should encourage riders with a KOTM interest to get away and if not a threat on GC Astana won’t ride hard.The sprint teams won’t put in too much effort as the finish doesn’t suit them,although Orica seem to think that this stage favours Matthews,so the break could make it all the way.

For the first time in this Vuelta I think the morning break will make it.The GC teams will want to rest up before Friday,that means I have the hard job of picking the break!

Cataldo,Edet,Westra,De Greef,Howes,Clarke,Txurruka,Ulissi are just a few names that might have a go.

This is what Orica DS Matt Wilson had to say about it,

“It’s a hard finish tomorrow,” said Wilson. “We’re not quite sure how it will go down. There’s a potential for the breakaway to stay away, but on paper, it looks like it could be a good finish for Matthews. We’ll discuss our options tonight and make a decision from there.”

Doesn’t sound too confident.

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