Departure place Alcorcón lies to the southwest of Madrid. It is one of many suburbs and, as in most suburbs, is it pretty quiet and eventful. That is, most of the time. The city is home to AD Alcorcón, the local football club that rose to national fame when it defeated international powerhouse Real Madrid 4-0 in the Copa del Rey 2009/2010. Following the second leg at the Santiago Bernabéu the club ousted Real Madrid 4–1 on aggregate.
Today Alcorcón and Madrid don’t play against each other, instead the cities are linked in the last stage of La Vuelta. Following a slight detour the riders hit the 5.9 kilometres circuit in the city centre of Madrid. It’s flat and it’s straightforward and it’s raced eleven times. Last edition, Alberto Contador entered the circuit slightly ahead of the others. El campeón was saluted by cheers and applause from the home crowds and he drank in this goodbye.
It’s a safe bet to expect a bunch sprint in Madrid. Previous winners at this arrival are Matteo Trentin (2017), Magnus Cort (2016), John Degenkolb (2015, 2012), Michael Matthews (2013), Peter Sagan (2011), and Tyler Farrar (2010). They all turned out on top in a bunch sprint.
The first three riders on the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds, while the intermediate sprint (at kilometre 41.9) comes with 3, 2 and 1 seconds.
Vuelta a España 2018 stage 21: Route maps, height profiles, and more
Click on the images to zoom