La Vuelta a España Stage 13: Brambilla, Uran Stay with Select Group on Deceptively Steep Finale
An uncategorized uphill section in the final kilometers of 188.7km La Vuelta a España Stage 13 caused some carnage in the peloton on Friday, as some late race attacks put many riders on the limit and gaps resulted in the pack.
OPQS rider Gianluca Brambilla was one of the riders who was a protagonist, attacking with a little more than 2km to go in the stage that finished in Obregón. Daniel Navarro (Cofidis) bridged to him and was able to go over the top. He eventually won the medium mountain stage solo by a few seconds.
Daniel Moreno (Team Katusha) was 2nd, and Wilco Kelderman (Belkin) was 3rd. Meanwhile, Brambilla still managed an impressive 10th place finish with a select group of top GC contenders who all finished 5" down on Navarro. OPQS leader Rigoberto Uran was well protected by his team going into the finale, and finished 12th to preserve his virtual 3rd place in the GC (+1'08").
The race came back together with 7.3km to go in the stage, as the peloton caught a solo rider from an original five-rider breakaway.
OPQS looks next to 200.8km Stage 14 on Saturday. The high mountain stage could be a big day for GC contenders, with three high category climbs. Cat.1 Puerto de San Glorio (20.9km 5.8% average gradient), which has a summit at km 130.9, will be a challenge as will be the summit finish on Cat. 1 La Camperona (8.3km, 7.5% average gradient). La Camperona gets particularly challenging in the final 2.3km of the climb, with an average gradient of 14% and a max ramp of 19.5%.