Vuelta a España. Miguel Angel Lopez finishes second atop Sierra de La Pandera
Just eight seconds did Olympic champion Richard Carapaz manage to hold off Astana Qazaqstan’s Miguel Angel Lopez and Primoz Roglic. Carapaz won Stage 14 from the break of the day.
On the last nine-kilometer climb, at four kilometers from the finish, Roglic attacked and distanced the Red Jersey Remco Evenepoel. First Mas and Lopez, and later on just Lopez alone could follow Roglic. The gap with Carapaz fell to 10-15 seconds with one kilometer to go.
“We saw him that final kilometer, but I knew that climb. Although Primoz and I were chasing him full gas, it was impossible to close that gap in the last kilometer as it was down a steep descent before a 300-meter kick-up to the finish line. Just as in 2017 I finish second on this Sierra de La Pandera. The most important thing however is that things are going well. I feel better every day. There is progression and I hope we can continue this way”, – said Miguel Angel Lopez.
Thanks to his strong performance Miguel Angel Lopez moves to sixth place in the overall classification.
“No, I don’t dream of a podium yet. I feel good for the moment, but we still have a long way to go to Madrid”, – continued Lopez.
Winner Carapaz was part of a ten-rider break that went away after 90 kilometers of super-fast racing. The opening 50 km were covered in just over an hour. Also, Alexey Lutsenko was part of that break that was only caught – except Carapaz – in the last three kilometers of the race.
Earlier in the stage there were also attacks from Yevgeniy Fedorov and Vincenzo Nibali. Nibali was the first attacker of the day, with Robert Stannard and Hugh Carthy. Once caught he immediately tried again.
Before Monday’s rest day, the riders will climb tomorrow to the Alto Hoya de la Mora, 2500 meters above sea level in the Sierra Nevada.
Photo credit: @Gettysport