Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Vuelta a Espana Stage 15

Stage 15 of the Vuelta a Espana was 142.2 km long (88.3 miles) with two climbs. It was a triumphant stage for team Geox's Juan Jose Kobo. The first climb Alto de Tenebredo began at 75.6 kms (46.9 miles). The climb continued for 3.5 kms (2.17miles) with an average grade of 9.6%. After 8.5 kms (5.28 miles) of steep descending the riders reached the base of Angliru.

Alto de l'Angliru

Angliru is a 12.5 km (7.76 mile) epic climb into the mist of the clouds. The average grade is 10.2% with a maximum grade of 23.5%. The fans lined the steepest portions of the climb allowing only a narrow passage for the riders. At one point the motorcycle carrying a camera crashed in the midst of the fans causing the tv announcers to loose contact with the general contender riders, Wiggens, Froome and the rest.

Juan Jose Kobo stays focused
Kobo's climb up the Angliru was truely amazing to watch. His expression and cadence seem to stay unchanged for the whole of the climb. I read that he was the only rider to use a 34 x 32 gearing, of course we'll never know if he dropped into the largest sprocket. None the less it was a phenomenal performance.

Chris Froome and Bradley Wiggens of Team Sky clearly suffering 

Bradley Wiggens (the red jersey) cracked on the 23% grade, falling back, eventually finishing at +1:21 minutes behind Kobo the stage winner and new overall leader of the Vuelta. Can Kobo hang onto the lead after yesterdays rest day and 6 more stages to go or will Wiggens or Froome retake the red jersey (overall lead)?


 Stage 15 results

1  Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC           4:01:56   
2  Wout Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM               + 0:48   
3  Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC      
4  Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky      
5  Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky                      + 1:21   
6  Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi      
7  Joaquin Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha         + 1:35   
8  Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard Trek      
9  Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank    
10 Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil-DCM 

General Classification after Stage 15
1  Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC          59:57:16
2  Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky                   + 0:20
3  Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky                      + 0:46
4  Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank                   + 1:36
5  Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard Trek              + 2:37
6  Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC                   + 3:01
7  Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Leopard Trek              + 3:06
8  Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale      + 3:27
9  Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto + 3:58
10 Wout Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM               + 4:13

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