Never one day is like another on a Grand Tour. And racing the Vuelta in the middle of autumn doesn't make it any better. The Tour of Spain is traditionally held under a strong sun, but here, the sky is as threatening as yesterday and the wind is even stronger than the day before.
With the acceleration of the Movistars with around 50 kilometres to go, these winds caused several bursts with around 50 kilometres to go. José Herrada stayed in the first group, but the other riders of the Cofidis group got caught behind.
Around Guillaume Martin, they tried their best to come back to the peloton. A particularly tricky challenge, especially since Pierre-Luc Périchon fell again in a descent and had to change the bike, he was yet able to get back afterwards.
Despite the legitimate disappointment, the goal of the team didn't change on this Vuelta: to fight with determination for a stage victory. Moreover, they will have to re-mobilize themselves tomorrow with a stage of 166km and above all a new finish at the summit - the Laguna Negra.
Guillaume MARTIN: "We lacked vigilance on the break and the gap widened quickly. We then tried to get organized and I thank all my team-mates for getting together at the bottom to reduce the gap. But in the valley, with a peloton launched at high speed and the wind, there was nothing to do. After that, I know that the fact that I have lost some time also gives me some room for maneuver for the next stage. Even if it's a bad day, maybe this lost time is a blessing in disguise to help us achieve our initial goal: to win a stage victory".
Jean-Luc JONROND, sports director: "Of course, there is disappointment that we got trapped with this "bordure". It was a mistake of the riders, except José (Herrada) who followed the train imposed by the Movistar. Of course, the gap has increased in the overall classification for Guillaume. After that, we know that this could leave him more room for a stage victory. In any case, we will do everything we can to fight back with that objective in mind".