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.
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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.