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What we know almost halfway through the Vuelta

  • By Andrew Hood
  • Published Aug. 27, 2012
Wednesday's time trial will tell us a lot about the GC battle, but won't decide the fight. Photo: Graham Watson | www.grahamwatson.com

The TT will reveal a lot, but not crown winner

Wednesday’s 40km time trial will be D Day for all the top GC favorites, but it will not crown the eventual winner. Unlike the Tour this year, which had three ITTs totaling more than 100km, the Vuelta’s lone individual time trial will position someone for final victory, but not likely prove the decider.

Here’s why. Wednesday’s route features a challenging third-category climb just past the midway point that is steeper than it looks on paper. And there’s barely a straight road in Galicia, meaning riders that are normally on the back foot in time trials, such as Rodríguez and Valverde, should be able to limit their losses against the likes of Contador or Froome. The TT will certainly change the dynamic, because it should put either Froome or Contador into the leader’s jersey. And that means everyone else will have only one tactical option: attack.

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Andrew Hood

Andrew Hood

Andrew Hood cut his journalistic teeth at Colorado dailies before the web boom opened the door to European cycling in the mid-1990s. Hood has covered every Tour de France since 1996 and has been VeloNews' European correspondent since 2002.

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