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La Vuelta: Stage 9 Contador on the attack

September 3, 2014

Any question about Contador’s quality and ambition were answered today. On the final decisive climb, Contador followed Dan Martin’s attack and when he saw that the other favourites were struggling he carried the attack through. Quintana and Rodriguez just caught him at the line, and Quintana takes the lead, but it was Contador that has lit up the race. Froome was eating only 5km from the line, so there were signs that he was not having a good day. A rider on form does not search for energy so close to the finish. He was not able to follow the attacks but only lost a few seconds in the end, so was able to manage his effort to the finish.

Anacona won the stage. He was in the huge break of more than 30 riders. It is unusual that so many are allowed to escape the peloton. That suggests Movistar either was not interested or perhaps unable to control the stage early on. It is very risky to allow large breaks to form, as they can gain many minutes on the peloton. That can launch an outsider into the race lead and even win the race.

Despite all the action, the gaps in GC have not really opened up and the list of contenders is still quite long. Kelderman had the worst day out of the remainder of my watch list and lost about a minute. That leaves Gesink clearly in front of the trio of Belkin leaders.

 

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