Race leader looking ahead to mountainous final week

TAGS:

Chris Froome (Team Sky) says that he doesn’t expect the Vuelta a España to be decided on stage 16’s individual time trial, and is not expecting to gain a large amount of time on his rivals.

“I’ve been looking forward to the TT, it’s certainly going to be one of the more crucial stages that will decide this year’s Vuelta GC,” Froome said on the race’s second rest day in Logroño.

“I’m not expecting to take huge amounts of time, but if I can extend my lead at all that would be fantastic.”

>>> Vuelta a España 2017: stage 16 individual time trial start times

Froome has been tipped greatly extend his lead on his GC rivals on the flat 40.2km time trial course between Circuito de Navarra and Logroño.

The Team Sky rider currently holds a lead of 1-01 over Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), with Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) in third a further 1-07 back.

While the flat course should suit Froome more than his GC rivals, the 32-year-old says that he is taking the race “one day at a time” and thinks that the mountainous final week could have more of a bearing on the final destination of the red jersey, especially the steep climbs of the Alto de l’Angliru and Los Machucos.

>>> The Vuelta a España will take on an incredibly steep 31% climb and these photos show just how tough it is

“Obviously Angliru is at the end of the week and that’s looming in the back of my mind as well.

“The day after the TT we’ve got Los Machucos to think about which is tough as in a TT you can’t really save much for the next day.

“Having said that, I’m certainly going to ride the TT with Machucos in mind and know that I’ll need quite a lot to get up the steep summit finish.”