Stage 9 in the 2017 Vuelta España is almost a copy of the route of the 7th stage in 2015. While that race lef from Torrevieja today’s stage starts 30 kilometres inland in Orihuela. The riders set off to the coast and from Alicante onwards the route is the same as two years ago.
The riders pass through Benidorm and then continue to Calpe, winter-base to a lot of pro-teams. Last year the ITT was played out in this area with Chris Froome powering to victory.
Almost 20 kilometres after Calpe the route takes in the first climb up the Alto de Puig Llorença in Cumbre del Sol, which is a residential area in Benitachell. It starts at a roundabout and soon the riders face ramps of up 18%. The first climb goes to an elevation of 350 metres. Still some 30 kilometres left to race.
Following a local round the climb up Alto de Puig Llorença appears again. This time the climb is longer as the route takes in a dead end to the weather station at the top, amounting to 4.1 kilometres with an average gradient of 8.8%. The steepest section is 19%, while the last kilometre is averaging 10%.
Two years ago the Cumbre del Sol was an unprecedented ascent in the Vuelta. When a bunch of escapees was reeled in on the lower flanks of the closing climb both Quintana and Valverde went on the attack, but to no avail. Then Dumoulin was off for a strong solo effort, yet the Dutchman was caught by Chris Froome and Purito Rodríguez with 200 metres left. At the eleventh hour he came back from the dead to grab both stage win and leader’s jersey.
Time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds lay waiting on the line in the 9th stage of the Vuelta a España.
Vuelta 2017 stage 9: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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