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Vuelta a España 2017

Stage Nine Re-cap:

How do you get a monkey off your back? If you're Chris Froome you win a stage in the Grand Tour of which you are currently in the lead. Widely disparaged for not winning a single stage in the recent Tour de France, Froomie was like a man possessed as he climbed to the stage win on Sunday.

While Contador hung tough until right before the summit's finish line (and moved up to #13 on GC), several GC hopefuls did not fare as well. Froome gained both time on the clock as well as bonus time for crossing the line first - further entrenching his lead in the Vuelta.

General Classification Top-Ten after Stage 9:
1) Christopher Froome (Sky) 36:33:16
2) Johan Esteban Chaves Rubio (Orica-Scott) 0:00:36
3) Nicolas Roche (BMC) 0:01:05
4)Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) 0:01:17
5) Tejay van Garderen (BMC) 0:01:27
6) David de la Cruz (Quick-Step) 0:01:30
7) Fabio Aru (Astana) 0:01:33
8) Michael Woods (Cannondale-Drapac) 0:01:52
9) Adam Yates (Orica-Scott) 0:01:55
10) Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) 0:02:15

The Jersey Distribution after Stage Nine:
Leader: Christopher Froome (Sky)
Points: Matteo Trentin (Quick-Step)
Mountains: Davide Villella (Cannondale-Drapac)

Stage 10: Caravaca Año Jubilar 2017 / ElPozo Alimentación, 164.8 Km

This is going to be a good one! The action is packed into the last third of the stage as a Cat 3 climb morphs into the vicious Cat 1 Collado Bemmejo and then concludes in a long dangerous descent to the finish line - an open invitation to a good descender to make up lost time if he can just get past Froome and Contador.

Normally, I would say this one might be in Nibali's wheelhouse - but I think we are in for a surprise winner of this brutal stage.

Stage 10 Map:
Blue Green Brown Yellow Colorfulness
Stage 10 Profile:
Red Font Colorfulness Carmine Slope
 

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Bianchi Nuovo Alloro, Lemond Etape
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I just watched a yoo tube of the final KMS of stage 9 - wow.
Well played by Sky. They timed the swallow of the lead and the subsequent pace-setting just right - stole the stage from a bunch of guys who otherwise would be contenders. Froome with authoritay. He did not have to win, but yes, he drew a lot of flack for being in the rocking chair nearly all TdF.
TVG looked really good.
That final climb was brutal, and the only way I would even walk a bike up that hill was if I had a rest day the next day. At speed, the turns were murder.

The win will have a big psychological effect, I bet. Many are close - Yates is within half minute, and other contenders are right up there. But it looks like Sky has this dialed in.

For Stage 10, I guess the GC contenders will allow a safe breakaway to develop, then catch them on the climb, with contenders checking each other. Someone will blow up. Could be anybody but I seriously doubt it will be Froome.

If it is reasonably close, we may see a scorcher of a downhill. Has Froome already had his children? If so, he may be willing to do his aero downhill again, where the main fear is rendering yourself sterile from hitting that one bump.

Spain keeps hoping for a win...
 

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Where's that GPS?
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Breakaway has some room going downhill, but Nibali is going for it as well with Froome and Chaves trying to stay close.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Trentin wins from the breakaway - Froome's jersey remains secure.
 

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The big gain of the day was for Roche who went off the front from the Nibali, Froome, other GC guys group and is now in second equal place with Chavez.
 

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Roche gained 29(?) seconds and now is tied for 2nd with Chaves. I hope Roche and TGV can work to make something happen for BMC, but that team never seems to have a clear leader or strategy. We'll see as the mountain get higher.
 

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I watched the eurosport-derived final 20 minutes on yoo tube - why was roson so visibly upset crossing the finish line? did he suffer some mishap along the way?

overall, that was a scary, thrilling descent. I kind of liked that there was very little flat at the end.
 

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Not sure why he was upset, but from what I know following Caja Rural he didn't have any issues. Plus Trentin and Rojas both have pretty good sprints, where Roson is not a sprinter.
 

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I'm pleasantly surprised that TJVG didn't fold with a tough stage the day after a rest day. Maybe this portends good things for him?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Doubt it. If TvJ is able to hold on and secure a top-five here, I will have consider it a job-well-done.

Roche is BMC's contender now.
 

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Doubt it. If TvJ is able to hold on and secure a top-five here, I will have consider it a job-well-done.

Roche is BMC's contender now.
I'm torn on this. I think he will fade when it gets to the really big mountains. I also think TVG will have a bad day. In the end, I doubt either will be in the top 5, but I hope I'm wrong.
 

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We haven't gotten to the 2nd rest day yet. If Tejay is still in the top 5 after the day after the 2nd rest day then we can talk about it. Until then, nope.
Today's climb/descent is the same climb descent the Vuelta a Murcia used back in Feb and is the descent where the picture of Valverde bunny hopping a pot hole is from. Funny to see riders today having issues with it after watching Valverde's mastery of it earlier this year. However that would also be the difference of a rider in Valverde's case who uses this climb/descent as part of one of his training routes and riders who rarely ever ride this climb/descent.
 
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