Departure place Vitoria-Gasteiz is a regular on the Tour of the Basque Country. Last year, a stage left from the Basque capital to travel Eibar (Omar Fraile win), two years ago to San Sebastián (David de la Cruz win) and in 2016 the race went to Lesaka (Stephen Cummings win). Remarkably, all three stages ended on descent, which is also the case this year.
The first obstacle takes the shape of Campa Hafade – 3.1 kilometres at 5.8%. The descent features a number of uphill kicks before arriving at the base of the short and sharp Garate. The hill – 1.5 kilometres at 6.2% – is crested after the halfway mark.
Riders with bad legs will look forward in fear as the third uphill of the day is the toughest. After a prolonged false flat and a short descent the ‘Itzulia Basque Country’ reaches the foot of the Bikoitz Gane. The average gradient of the 4.9 kilometres climb is 8.6%. The early slopes are friendly enough, but after kilometre 2 the gradients are constantly yo-yoing between 8 and 13% before the last 400 metres level out to 5%.
A long descent with some uphill kicks leads to the decisive and irregular last climb. The first kilometre slopes at 2.3% and the second at 6.4% before an 800 metres drop continues onto 500 metres at 10%. The last 500 metres are 4.6%, so a rider with enough juice left could push on to be the first to drop down a flying descent to the finish line in Arrigorriaga.
Another interesting read: results/race report 4th stage 2019 Tour of the Basque Country.
Tour of the Basque Country 2019 stage 4: route, profile, more
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