The race sets off in Prades, France. Almost without delay the route goes uphill and 31.5 kilometres into the stage the riders crest Col de la Perche. The peak lies at an elevation of 1,560 metres, while the last 12 kilometres of the climb are averaging 3.7%.
In a long descent the riders land on Spanish soil for the first time in the 2017 Vuelta. Shortly after passing through Seo d’Urgell with 114.2 kilometres done the riders hit the first slopes of the Coll de la Rabassa. The 13.2 kilometres climb is averaging 6.9% with a steepest ramp of 15.5%. At an elevation of 1,820 metres, the top is crested 127.5 kilometres into the race. By now the Vuelta is in Andorra.
The last challenge is the Alto de la Comella, a 4.3 kilometres climb at 8.3%. The steepest sector of 12% is 800 metres before the top. Once above, a flying 7.1 kilometres drop leads to the line in Andorra la Vella.
Alto de la Comella featured in the Queen Stage of the 2016 Tour de France. Thomas de Gendt was the first rider to crest the then third climb of the day, while Tom Dumoulin eventually took the stage. Two years ago the Comella was in the Vuelta, too – albeit, with a much less happier Dumoulin. The Comella was the penultimate climb of a stage that was won by Mikel Landa and Fabio Aru took the red jersey from Dumoulin.
The first three riders on the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds, while the intermediate sprint (at kilometre 145.4) comes with 3, 2 and 1 seconds.
Read also: results/race report 3rd stage 2017 Vuelta.
Vuelta 2017 stage 3: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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Details Col de la Perche
Details Coll de la Rabassa
Final kilometres 3rd stage
Details finish 3rd stage