Dumoulin can forget classification in Vuelta, Roglic strengthens lead | NOW

Tom Dumoulin lost a lot of time on Wednesday in the second stage of the Vuelta a España. His teammate Primoz Roglic finished second behind stage winner Marc Soler in the difficult mountain stage and cemented his leading position in the general classification.

Dumoulin had to release early from the front group on the last climb and came in more than eight minutes from Soler. The Limburger of Jumbo-Visma also gave in almost a minute to Roglic in the opening stage.

Soler broke away from the favorites group in the descent of the last climb and crossed the finish line solo. The Spaniard, who won Paris-Nice two years ago, booked his first stage victory in a big round.

Roglic won the sprint for second place in nineteen seconds and thus took six bonus seconds. Daniel Martin finished third. Jumbo-Visma riders Sepp Kuss (ninth) and George Bennett (tenth) also belonged to the favorites group.

Roglic is now nine seconds ahead of Martin in the general classification. Richard Carapaz occupies third place on eleven counts. Wout Poels, who lost more than a minute on Wednesday, is the best Dutchman in 21st place.

On Thursday another difficult mountain stage is on the program in the Vuelta. After more than 166 kilometers, the finish is on a climb of the first category.

Wellens goes on the attack alone

The second stage took the peloton 151.6 kilometers from Pamplona to Lekunberri. On the way, a climb of the first category and two hills of the third category had to be conquered.

Early on, Tim Wellens chose the adventure together with the Dutchman Julius van den Berg, among others. The Belgian attacked on the first climb and in the descent he was joined by the French Bruno Armirail and Jonathan Hivert and the Spaniards Gonzalo Serrano and Alex Aranburu.

The quintet built up a four-minute lead, but the pace on the second mound was too slow for Wellens. The Lotto Soudal rider attacked again and soon had a one and a half minute lead over his fellow breakaway riders.

Froome misses the battle at fans

With 60 kilometers to go, the peloton was split by fans, even though the entire top twenty of the general classification was in class. Chris Froome fell behind and even ended up behind the first released group.

Wellens dropped back to the chasing group before the climb of the first category, which was just under a minute ahead of the thinned peloton. At the foot of the Alto de San Miguel de Aralar, Armirail was the last of the escapees to be caught and an attack by Carapaz was also unsuccessful.

Dumoulin had to release quickly on the 9.4-kilometer climb with an average gradient of 7.9 percent and a maximum gradient of 15 percent, and Poels was unable to follow a little later. In the end, a nine-man favorite group remained at the top, including Roglic and Kuss.

In the descent Soler drove away and took a lead of twenty seconds. The Movistar rider held his ground and soloed to victory.


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