Vuelta a Espana: Roglic begins red jersey defence with victory

By Sports Desk October 20, 2020

Reigning champion Primoz Roglic took the red jersey with an impressive success on the opening stage of the Vuelta a Espana.

After losing out on Tour de France glory to Tadej Pogacar in dramatic fashion in September, Roglic quickly laid down a marker in the final Grand Tour of the year.

The Slovenian attacked on the category one ascent of the Alto de Arrate – the final test on the 173-kilometre stage from Irun to Eibar – and beat Richard Carapaz to the line to take a five-second lead in the General Classification.

Only eight riders managed to stay within 10 seconds of Roglic, with Jumbo-Visma team-mate Tom Dumoulin and 2009 champion Alejandro Valverde – both considered among the other contenders for glory in Spain – already over a minute behind in the GC.

Roglic said: "It's nice to win. I'm really happy. The team showed again that they're all really strong. They worked perfectly through the whole stage and in the end I was able to win so it's a beautiful start.

"It was already hard before the final climb, and then we were going full gas. We have crazy guys like Sepp [Kuss] and I'm just happy to win it in the end.

"It's a strange season so I'll just enjoy the leader's jersey, starting from tomorrow, and the fact that we're racing."

Thibaut Pinot lost over 10 minutes, while Chris Froome, contesting his final Grand Tour with INEOS, finished more than 11 minutes back.

 

STAGE RESULT

1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 4:22:34
2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS) +00:01
3. Daniel Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) +00:01
4. Jhoan Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott) +00:01
5. Felix Grossschartner (Bora-Hansgrohe) +00:01

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification  

1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 04:22:24
2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS) +00:05
3. Daniel Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) +00:07 

Points Classification  

1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 25
2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS) 20
3. Daniel Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) 16 

King of the Mountains

1. Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) 10
2. Quentin Jauregui (AG2R La Mondiale) 6
3. Enric Mas (Movistar) 6 

WHAT'S NEXT? 

The 151.6km ride from Pamplona to Lekunberri includes three categorised climbs, the last of which lasts for 9.4km at an average gradient of 7.9 per cent.

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  • Vuelta a Espana: Roglic clinches second successive red jersey Vuelta a Espana: Roglic clinches second successive red jersey

    Primoz Roglic clinched a second successive Vuelta a Espana title by finishing the processional stage safely as Pascal Ackermann won a photo finish in Madrid.

    Roglic lost time on stage 17 on Saturday but not enough to take the red jersey from him, the Slovenian effectively ensuring he would retain the title.

    His victory was confirmed in the Spanish capital, where a thrilling sprint saw a dramatic conclusion to the 18th and final stage of the last race of the season.

    Bora Hansgrohe led matters going into the final kilometre of the 139.6km route and it was they who were celebrating at the finish as Ackermann edged Sam Bennett on the line.

    Roglic also takes the green points jersey, with Guillaume Martin named King of the Mountains.

    "It is beautiful to finish the season like this," Roglic told Eurosport. 

    "I always say every time when you win it's beautiful. It's really hard. It's impossible to compare [the two titles]."


    STAGE RESULT

    1. Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) 3:28:13
    2. Sam Bennett (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) Same time
    3. Max Kanter (Sunweb) Same time
    4. Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates) Same time
    5. Jasha Sutterlin (Sunweb) Same time

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

    General Classification

    1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 72:46:12
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +00:24
    3. Hugh Carthy (EF Pro Cycling) +01:15

    Points Classification

    1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 204
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) 133
    3. Dan Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) 111

    King of the Mountains

    1. Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) 99
    2. Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) 34
    3. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) 30

  • Vuelta a Espana: Roglic set to retain title despite late Carapaz scare Vuelta a Espana: Roglic set to retain title despite late Carapaz scare

    Primoz Roglic will retain his Vuelta a Espana title in Madrid on Sunday despite Richard Carapaz threatening to inflict more penultimate-stage heartbreak on the Slovenian.

    David Gaudu stormed up La Covatilla to claim a magnificent second stage victory of this year's Vuelta, but it was further down the mountain where the drama was unfolding.

    Roglic started a brutal, decisive stage 17 on Saturday with a 45-second lead over Carapaz, but the Jumbo-Visma rider was in danger of losing the red jersey on a gruelling final climb to a mountain-top finish.

    Hugh Carthy, third in the General Classification standings, made a move with 4.5km to go, yet Roglic and Carapaz reacted and were able to follow the Brit again when he burst away for a second time.

    Roglic and Carthy could not catch Ecuadorian climber Carapaz when he decided the time had come to make one massive final push to try and win the race 3km from the end of the gruelling 178.2km stage from Sequeros.

    A shattered Roglic looked to be in trouble as he faded and was left isolated as INEOS Grenadiers rider Carapaz darted up the mountain, with the leader struggling on the steeper sections.

    Carthy also moved away from Roglic, but the reigning champion dug deep to cross the line 21 seconds after Carapaz, who will have to settle for second place.

    Roglic endured the agony of sensationally losing his Tour de France lead to Tadej Pogacar on the decisive stage in September, but he was not to be denied on this occasion despite the best efforts of Carapaz in an enthralling battle.

    A second Grand Tour title will be Rogic's at the end of a 124.4km flat processional ride from Hipodromo de la Zarzuela to Madrid on Sunday.

     

    STAGE RESULT

    1. David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) 4:54:32
    2. Gino Mader (NTT) +00:28
    3. Ion Izagirre (Astana) +01:05
    4. David de la Cruz (UAE Team Emirates) +01:05
    5. Mark Donovan (Sunweb) +01:53

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

    General Classification

    1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 64:20:31
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) +00:24
    3. Hugh Carthy (EF Pro Cycling) +00:47

    Points Classification

    1. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 204
    2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) 133
    3. Dan Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) 111

    King of the Mountains

    1. Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) 99
    2. Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) 34
    3. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) 30

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