Last year, stage 2 started and finished in exactly the same places as this year’s stage 2. When a climb with 6 kilometres left proved to be too much for a lot of riders, Alejandro Valverde powered away to grab the stage win at the slightly uphill arrival.
This year’s finale is an exact copy. Following a 2.1 kilometres climb at 4.5% a short descent takes the riders to the 4.8 kilometres ascent at 4.2% where many riders met their Waterloo in 2015. As said, the final kilometre is a false flat.
The rest of the race is mostly flat. That is, to Catalan standards, as roads are always undulating in this part of the world. But the only real climb is Alt de Els Angels, crested with slightly over 100 kilometres done. Marking the finale of last year’s 3rd stage (Pozzovivo win), now the 13 kilometres climb at 5% (steepest sector at 8%) is safely tucked away somewhere in the middle.
With last year’s arrival Olot made a come back in the Volta a Catalunya after a long absence. In the past the town hosted the race on numerous occasions with Joseph Pelletier (1920), Fermín Trueba (1941), Delio Rodriguez (1942), Roberto Poggiali (1965), Ludo Peeters (1983), Marino Alonso (1987) and Laurent Jalabert (1995) taking the flowers. In fact, Jalabert celebrated his overall victory that year as the last stage of that edition finished in Olot.
Olot lies amidst extinct volcanoes in the gorgeous Garrotxa Volcanic Zone Natural Park.
Race results/race report stage 2, Volta a Catalunya 2016.
Volta a Catalunya 2016 stage 2: Route maps, height profiles, etc.
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