After stage 11’s downhill finish into Elpozo Alimentacion, stage 12 sees the riders tackle a gruelling summit finish to Calar Alto at more than 2,000m above sea-level.
The uphill finishes so far in this race have been short, steep, and punchy, so this 15.5km final climb is the first real major mountain test, providing a good indication of what we can expect on the two even bigger summit finishes scheduled for the weekend.
With more rain forecast, the riders would also have to deal with wet roads for much of the stage, potentially proving dangerous with a technical descent preceding the final climb of the day.
Catch-up with highlights of the Vuelta a España stage 11 here or read our full report here.
The Vuelta continues on Thursday with a lumpy day including two categorised climbs on the 160km stage 12 to Antequera.