2022 Vuelta a España Stage 21 Preview

Las Rozas > Madrid 99.6km

A final sprint in Madrid to conclude the race.

Weather

Glorious sunshine.

Circuit

Same circuit that’s been used many times. The U-turn comes with 1km to go, and it usually gets very messy in the finishing straight.

Contenders

Tim Merlier – he’s got one last chance to get a win in this race, it’s not been a happy three weeks for the Belgian champion. He’s still got Taminiaux, Meurisse and Vermeersch to lead him out, that’s a good sprint train at this point in the race. This is the first time he’s completed a grand tour; I wonder how much he’s got left in his legs.

Mads Pedersen – what a race he’s had, one of the most dominant green jersey performances in recent times. The Dane looks so powerful just now, and he’d love to win a big sprint. His team have done a brilliant job in helping him, just watch Alex Kirsch, he’s doing the work of three men. Kirschy will get him in an ideal spot for the sprint, then we’ll see if he can win his fourth stage.

Danny van Poppel – he’ll fancy his chances of winning this stage. He’ll have Koch and Mullen to guide him in the closing kilometres, and we know he’s got the speed to win. 

Pascal Ackermann – no win, he’d love to finish the race by taking this stage in Madrid. UAE still have a full team, so they should be looking to control the closing stages. The German will have Oliveira and Molano for the final 2km, but they’ve yet to get it right in the race. This is their last chance; Ackermann will hope it clicks.

Dan McLay – another who’s gone close to winning a stage but just hasn’t quite managed it. He doesn’t have much of a sprint train, but he is good at looking after himself. If he gets the right wheel, he’s got the speed required to win.

Prediction Time

A fourth stage win for Mads Pedersen, what an incredible race he’s had.

Another grand tour is in the bag, thanks to all for reading my previews. This weekend will see the website hitting 900,000 page views since the start of the year, something I’m very proud of. I’ll be back in a couple of days for GP Wallonie.

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