Primož Roglič claimed his third stage victory of this year’s Vuelta a España with ease, taking the red jersey back off Richard Carapaz after powering away from his rivals with 400m to go on the kick to the line.
The Slovenian timed his attack well, moving up in Andrea Bagioli’s (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) slipstream before using his fast finish to cross the line first, taking 10 bonus seconds and creating gaps behind, which saw Carapaz lose three seconds, the pair now equal on time atop the general classification.
Bora-Hansgrohe’s Felix Grossschartner finished second on the stage, with Bagioli third, while Dan Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) finished seventh just ahead of Cofidis’ Guillaume Martin. Race leader Richard Carapaz (Ineos) came through in 14th place.
After two relatively quiet days at the Vuelta, the GC action continues this weekend, with two tough mountain days which should see further movement at the top of the overall classification.
How it happened
Rolling off from the seafront at Castro Urdiales on the Cantabrian coast, the peloton prepared themselves for another mostly flat affair on stage 10 before a final kick to the line.
Michal Paluta (CCC), Pim Ligthart (Total Direct Energie), Brent Van Moer (Lotto Soudal), and Alexander Molenaar (Burgos-BH) initially offered themselves up for the day’s break, with Quentin Jauregui (AG2R La Mondiale) and Jonathan Lastra (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) then trying to dash over to make it a six-man break.
The likes of Deceuninck – Quick-Step’s Rémi Cavagna (who else) and Fred Wright (Bahrain-McLaren) then also tried to bridge over, but only Lastra was able to, a quintet setting off up the road for a day out front.
Paluta then punctured, which saw him jettisoned from the move and slowly drifting back to the peloton.
With 120km to go the gap was out to 12 minutes as Deceuninck – Quick-Step and Mitchelton-Scott manned the front of the bunch, with Astana lending a hand too.
The gap had come down to around eight minutes with 100km remaining but 40km later, as they headed into the hills, this had come crashing down to under four minutes.
On the third category Alto de San Cipriano, Sam Bennett began to be dislodged, the big sprinter struggling up the climb. No lieutenants came back to help, though, with Deceuninck – Quick-Step clearly having another design for the day.
Bennett did momentarily got back on before starting to slip again soon after on the uphill to the intermediate sprint, before being dropped for good on another kick with 27km to the line.
The gap had now plummetted to around the one-minute mark, and by 16.5km the break was finally reeled in.
Willie Smit (Burgos BH) then peeled off the front with 10km to go, who was soon reeled in before Cavagna and Ivo Oliveira (UAE Team Emirates), Oliveira’s saddle then started slipping, disrupting their move, as the bunch loomed behind.
They still had a slight gap with 5km to go, with Cavagna then pushing on, dropping Oliveira, who was quickly swept up by the pack.
Cavagna was then caught with under 4km to go, Ineos on the front as the Frenchman drifted back into the bunch.
Deceuninck – Quick-Step then came to the front, having been able to save themselves as others chased Cavagna, guiding Bagioli through a techincal section with 2km to go.
The road started to kick up just before the flamme rouge and, finally, the race erupted into action.
Guillaume Martin attacked off the front in the polka dot jersey, with the peloton stringing out behind. The Frenchman was slowly brought back in as the gradient increased, before Roglič came flying through, powering past the rest and off the front.
Just before the line he sat back down in his saddle and looked behind, observing the gaps he’d opened up before lifting his arms in the air, having taken his third stage win and wrenched the red jersey back off the shoulders of Richard Carapaz.
Vuelta a España 2020, stage 10: Castro Urdiales to Suances (185km)
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma, in 4-14-11
2. Felix Grossschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe
3. Andrea Bagioli (Ita) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
4. Alex Aranburu (Esp) Astana
5. Robert Stannard (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
6. Julien Simon (Fra) Total Direct Energie
7. Dan Martin (Irl) Israel Start-Up Nation
8. Guillaume Martin (Fra) Cofidis, all at same time
9. Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates, at three seconds
10. Magnus Cort (Den) EF Pro Cycling, at same time
General classification after stage 10
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma, in 40-25-15
2. Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos, at same time
3. Dan Martin (Irl) Israel Start-Up Nation, at 25 seconds
4. Hugh Carthy (GBr) EF Pro Cycing, at 51s
5. Enric Mas (Esp) Movistar, at 1-54
6. Felix Grossschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 3-19
7. Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-Scott, at 3-28
8. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, at 3-35
9. Wout Poels (Ned) Bahrain-McLaren, at 3-47
10. Marc Soler (Esp) Movistar, at 3-52