We are used to it in La Vuelta and the 12th stage is one of many races which is far from flat without including any huge climbs. The route – running mostly on the Galician coast- travels from one hill to the next. The section between kilometre 30 and kilometre 85 is predominantly flat.
If the breakaway riders are given too much leash the race should come down to a battle between the early attackers. If not, a late attack could lead to glory. In both cases the finale should be the tonic to ignite the fireworks.
With 31,2 kilometres out a 2.9 kilometres climb at 6% ushers in the finale, but the party really gets going almost 20 kilometres before the line. A series of hills runs to the last kilometres on extremely narrow roads, making it hard to reel in attackers. A late attack is possibly even more promising as a rider who has been tucked away in the belly of the peloton will have fresh legs.
Obviously, a late attacker could also be a GC rider. For instance, strong time trialists like Kelderman or Porte…
Favourites 12th stage 2018 Vuelta a España
*** Tiesj Benoot, Thomas De Gendt, Nelson Oliveira
** Richie Porte, Wilco Kelderman, Ion Izagirre
* Jetse Bol, Adam Hansen, Tao Geoghegan Hart, Peter Kennaugh
(more to follow)
– route 12th stage
Vuelta a España 2018 stage 12: Route map, height profile, and more
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3D bird’s eye route
Streetview Estaca de Bares
Mondoñedo and Faro de Estaca de Bares at Google Maps