The day after a particularly demanding stage, the riders had to come back on the road this Sunday with another tough task to complete. At the end of the 109 km, a giant was waiting for the riders: the Alto de l'Angliru. This emblematic pass of the Vuelta has been ridden regularly since 1999.
Guillaume Martin secures his lead
With such a difference in altitude, everything predicted this final to be decided between the favourites. And it happened. For the Cofidis team however, the objective was the same as the day before: to keep on reinforcing Guillaume Martin's polka-dot jersey as best climber.
Martin succeed the mission by passing in the head of the first 4 climbs of the day! "There was a great collective work, Pierre-Luc Périchon for example accompanied Guillaume during all his missions", underlines one of the sports directors, Jean-Luc Jonrond."The contract is therefore 100% fulfilled!"
The leader of Cofidis scored 26 points today, bringing his total to 76 points. His closest rival, Sepp Kuss has only 25 pts. But there is only one mountain stage left, next Saturday on the day before the last stage in Madrid. The work done by the team during the whole week has thus paid off: Guillaume managed to consolidate his lead.
Long transfer on the programme
The day is not over yet. This Sunday evening, the team will have to ride around 320 km to reach La Coruña where the second rest day will take place. After that, it's time for the last week of the competition. It will start on Tuesday with the only individual time trial of this Vuelta, between Muros and Mirador de Ezaro (33,7 km).
GUILLAUME MARTIN SAID...
THE STAGE OF THE DAY
"The first objective was to score some points again and prevent my rivals from scoring any. In this respect, the race has been a total success, except for the last climb. For the stage victory, with the little margin we had with the breakaway, I didn't have too many illusions and hopes. It is still a good day and a nice way to end a tough but productive week".
THE WEEK IN REVIEW
"Doing everything I can to keep the jersey is a new way of riding for me. My main tactics is to wait more at the beginning of the stage and to attack at the end. Here, I have to push myself a little bit in order to succeed from the beginning of the stage. It's sometimes a bit difficult but for the moment I'm doing it well! I'm not going to give up the general classifications, especially in the Tour de France. But now, the Vuelta scenario shows that I can also aim for something else".
THE LAST WEEK
"We'll quietly summarize the results of the week this evening. But I am happy with my position as best climber, this allows me to approach the next week with confidence. I will have a little bit less pressure, but remain vigilant for the points and do everything I can to win a stage victory."