Vuelta 2018 Favourites stage 5: Sprinters after long downhill

Elia Viviani - Vuelta 2018 Favourites stage 5: Sprinters after long downhillThe 5th stage of the Vuelta a España moves through the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, which is Europe's highest mountain range after the Alps, but this doesn't shine through in the route. The route is far from flat, but chances are the fast men will battle it out in arrival place Roquetas de Mar. (Slideshow route/profile)

Following the start the route leaves iconic climbs up the Alto de Hazallanas, Alto de Monachil and Alto Hoya de la Mora alone. The riders travel south and then east to move through the Alpujarras. The region comprises the southern slopes of the Sierra Nevada and the adjacent valley with the Guadalfeo river on its bottom. Following the river upstream the route features quite some uphills, yet the average gradients are modest. With 26.7 kilometres remaining the Vuelta reaches the crest of Alto El Marcha, a 14.9 kilometres climb at 3.8%. A long and steady descent leads to the last 8 kilometres on the flat.

Once could argue the route is too hard for pure sprinters. Yet, Elia Viviani won the 3rd stage – featuring some 2,500 vertical metres – ahead of Giacomo Nizzolo and Peter Sagan.

Arrival place Roquetas de Mar is situated on the Mediterranean Sea. It’s a popular finish in the Clásica Almería. Last February, Caleb Ewan outsprinted Danny van Poppel in the coastal town.

Favourites 5th stage 2018 Vuelta a España

*** Elia Viviani, Peter Sagan, Nacer Bouhanni, Matteo Trentin
** Danny van Poppel, Michal Kwiatkowski, Giacomo Nizzolo
* Max Walscheid, Ryan Gibbons, Michael Schwarzmann

Vuelta a España 2018 stage 5: Route map, height profile, and more

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