Vuelta 2017 Favourites stage 14: For hors catégorie climbers

steven kruijswijk - Vuelta 2017 Favourites stage 14: For hors catégory climbersChances are the 14th stage in the Vuelta will come down to a battle of GC guys. It’s a summit finish on a hors catégory climb, while shortly before that last ascent the riders face another mountain. (Slideshow route/profile)

The route of the 14th stage in the Vuelta a España commences on hilly terrain to conclude with a monstrous finale. And not only the finale is tough – basically, the last 55 kilometres are pretty exhausting. An unranked climb leads to a slightly rolling section and with 30.4 kilometres to go the Alto de Valdepeñas de Jaen looms. But by far the toughest task is the Sierra de la Pandera, which is a 12 kilometres climb with an average gradient of 7.8%. The third and fourth kilometre before the top go up at double digits, while a short drop in the last kilometre leads to the final stretch of 500 metres at 8%.

The 14th stage in the Vuelta amounts to 175 kilometres. Following a false flat prelude the race gets more hilly along the way until the above mentioned duo Alto de Valdepeñas de Jaen/Sierra de la Pandera marks the finale. We can safely assume that a group of attackers will try their luck, but one may wonder if their break is going to bear fruit. The Pandera is such a tough taks that we should expect the GC guys to come to the fore. If not, the race will be won by the best climber in the break.

Favourites 14th stage 2017 Vuelta

*** Alberto Contador, Chris Froome, Vincenzo Nibali, Steven Kruijswijk
** Romain Bardet, Wilco Kelderman, Ilnur Zakarin, Miguel Ángel López
* Adam Yates, Esteban Chaves, Fabio Aru, Rafal Majka, Tejay van Garderen

Vuelta 2017 stage 14: Route maps, height profiles, and more

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