Wednesday August 30th, 2017

Stage 11Lorca / Observatorio Astronómico de Calar Alto

Start 12h28 (Local time)

Key moments

video30/08/2017 

Summary - Stage 11 - La Vuelta 2017

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Miguel Angel ‘Superman' Lopez enjoyed the first high-altitude finish of La Vuelta 2017, on Wednesday, to claim his first Grand Tour victory. The Colombian climber stuck with the favorites in the climb up to the astronomical observatory of Calar Alto and accelerated in the final kilometre to win ahead of Chris Froome (Team Sky), who keeps opening gaps on GC. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) is now 2nd, with a delay of 1'19”. Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott) lost two minutes.

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Chris Froome (Team Sky), overall leader: “I'm very happy with the outcomes from today. It was a very selective day for the GC. To finish 2nd, I couldn't ask for much more than that, other than stage victory, but when (Miguel Angel) Lopez went he was extremely strong. I figured for me the most important thing was to follow Vincenzo Nibali and stay with the favorites. Lopez was the most impressive today with his attack to win the stage, but otherwise I was more concentrated on staying with...

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Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana), winner of stage 11: “The truth is I'm very happy. It was a very hard stage, we spend more energy with the rain. I'm very happy because the team has been working very well since the beginning of La Vuelta. Our teammates had to work a lot for Fabio (Aru) and I. It's been impressive and in the end we found the good legs. I knew the final a little bit so I was cool headed and I chose to wait for the very steep last kilometre. I hope to maintain the progression I've...

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Newsflashes (Local time)

17:43Froome opens differences

General classification after stage 11:

1. Chris Froome Froome (Team Sky)

2. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), +1'19"

3. Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott), 2'33"

4. David De La Cruz (Quick-Step Floors), 2'36"

5. Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb), +2'37"

17:39Top 5

Results at Calar Alto:

1. Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana)

2. Chris Froome (Team Sky), +14”

3. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), +14”

4. Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb), +14”

5. Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), +31”

17:36Miguel Angel Lopez wins at Calar Alto!

Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) accelerated in the last kilometre to claim his first Grand Tour stage victory!

17:29Bardet and Atapuma are caught

Franco Pellizotti (Bahrain-Merida) brings Vincenzo Nibali, Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo), Wilco Kelderman (Sunweb), Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) and Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) to the two leaders with 7km to go. Chris Froome, who still has Mikel Nieve (Team Sky) by his side is in the last position.

Pello Bilbao (Astana) leads a chasing group with Fabio Aru (Astana) and David De La Cruz (Quick-Step Floors) with a delay of 35". Esteban Chaves, paced by Jack Haig (Orica-Scott) is...

17:167 riders in the leader group, Chaves in trouble

Gianni Moscon (Team Sky) sets the pace to get back to Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) and Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida). Chris Froome, Mikel Nieve (Team Sky), Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) and Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) are with them. Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott) is dropped.

17:11Contador attacks

Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) accelerates with 11km to go. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) jumps in his wheel and Team Sky control for Chris Froome (Team Sky).

Nicolas Roche (BMC) and David De La Cruz (Quick-Step Floors) are in trouble.

17:08Yates chases with a delay of 20"

Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) and Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates) have opened a 20" gap over Simon Yates (Orica-Scott) with 12km to go. The peloton is at 1'50".a

17:00Atapuma attacks, Bardet follows

Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates) accelerates with 14km to go. Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) follows him but Simon Yates (Orica-Scott) can't keep up.

16:573 leaders for the last climb

Simon Yates (Orica-Scott), Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) and Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates) tackle the climb up Altor Cala with a lead up to 2'45”.

16:53Bardet summits first

Results atop the alto de Velefique:
1. Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), 10 pts
2. Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates), 6 pts
3. Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal), 4 pts
4. Simon Yates (Orica-Scott), 2 pts
5. Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida), 1 pt
Sander Armée has been dropped in the downhill and the peloton is at 2'.

16:27The front group splits again

Simon Yates (Orica-Scott), Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal) and Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida) enjoy a 1'12" gap over the peloton 4km away from the summit.

16:21Yates joins the leading group, 2 Colombians on the move

Simon Yates (Orica-Scott) has made it to the front of the race with Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida). Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates) and Hernan Aguirre (Manzana Postobon) are chasing them with a delay of 30". The bunch, 6km from the summit, is at 1'05".

16:144 riders at the front

Igor Anton (Dimension Data) and Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal) have made it back to Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) and Aldemar Reyes (Manzana Postobon). They maintain a 1' lead over the bunch.

Simon Yates (Orica-Scott) has joined Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors) 23" behind the leaders.

16:08Simon Yates on the move

Simon Yates (Orica-Scott) accelerates in the peloton to prepare a move from Esteban Chaves.

16:06Bardet tears the break apart

Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) sets a hard pace at the front of the race. Only Aldemar Reyes (Manzana Postobon) follows him 10km away from the summit.

The pace from Orica-Scott is also splitting the peloton. About 30 riders remain together, with a delay of 1' over the front of the race.

15:58First climb of the day

Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors), Alessandro De Marchi (BMC), Antonio Pedrero (Movistar), Lennard Hofstede (Sunweb), Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), Simon Clarke (Cannondale-Drapac), Antwan Tolhoek (LottoNL-Jumbo), Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates), Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal), Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida), Igor Anton (Dimension Data), David Arroyo (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Conor Dunne (Aqua Blue Sport), Aldemar Reyes (Manzana Postobon) tackle the climb up the alto de Velefique...

15:54De Marchi punctures

Alessandro De Marchi (BMC) chases his way back to the front of the race after a puncture 45km away from the finish line.

15:52Chaves: "It's a day to be at the front"

Orica-Scott lead a strung out peloton. Esteban Chaves spoke to lavuelta.com about his intentions: “I'm looking forward to this stage. It's a day to be at the front, very attentive to what happens. It looks like in Murcia and the South of Spain they're not very used to the rain and you can see it in towns and roundabouts where the road is water-logged. We need to be careful, that's normal in places where it doesn't rain a lot. We'll see how the race unfolds. We start with a plan but then...

15:44The gap quickly decreases

With Magnus Cort Nielsen and Christopher Juul Jensen (Orica-Scott) setting a hard pace, the breakaway's lead is down to 3 minutes as the race enters the last 50km.

15:35Orica at the front of the bunch

Orica-Scott up the tempo for Esteban Chaves. The gap gets down to 4' with 55km to go.

15:30Postobon sticks to an aggressive strategy

With the race heading into the mountains, Manzana Postobon are once again involved in the breakaway, with Aldemar Reyes at the front of the race. Bernardo Suaza spoke to lavuelta.com: “Under the rain I felt pretty good yesterday. I was at the front, I remained in the first bunch when it split. Too bad we couldn't make it into the breakaway, but we'll keep trying. Today we get in the mountains and I think we need to go for the early moves again, because it's hard for us when we are fighting...

15:16Froome: "A good opportunity to fight for the stage victory"

Chris Froome (Team Sky) announced during yesterday's press conference he was interested in the victory at Calar Alto: “Tomorrow is a good opportunity maybe for us to fight for the stage victory, so maybe it's not such a good day for the breakaway. I don't know the climb at all. I'll have to ask Alberto Contador about it. It's his training area, he knows it very well. But I imagine with it being the first very high mountain finish, we'll see a very aggressive race towards the final and...

15:06Intermediate sprint

Results at Sorbas (km 103):

1. Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates)

2. Simon Clarke (Cannondale-Drapac)

3. Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors)

15:04Pozzovivo abandons

Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R-La Mondiale) is the 20th rider to leave La Vuelta 2017.

15:03Pozzovivo abandons

Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R-La Mondiale) is the 20th rider to leave La Vuelta 2017.

14:49Feeding zone

The attackers travel through the feeding zone (km 99) with a an advantage of 4'30". They've maintained an average speed of 45.1km/h in the first two hours of racing.

14:47De Jongh aims for "the big show, the stage win and the podium"

Steven de Jongh (DS for Trek-Segafredo) still has high hopes for  : “It's a pity about Andorra, of course. Alberto had a little sickness and he lost some time, but after that he recovered well and I think there's still a lot of possibilities of doing a podium. Maybe it all comes together: the big show, the stage win and the podium. Alberto doesn't care about the rain, so that's good for today. It's gonna be hard, with two big and long climbs. It will be a though day, we will have to see...

14:36Pedrero punctures

Antonio Pedrero (Movistar) suffers a puncture at the front of the race.

14:334 minutes

The gap is up to 4'06" as Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors), Alessandro De Marchi (BMC), Antonio Pedrero (Movistar), Lennard Hofstede (Sunweb), Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), Simon Clarke (Cannondale-Drapac), Antwan Tolhoek (LottoNL-Jumbo), Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates), Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal), Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida), Igor Anton (Dimension Data), David Arroyo (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Conor Dunne (Aqua Blue Sport), Aldemar Reyes (Manzana Postobon) reach km 91.

14:29Ledanois: "Froome is the strongest and then anything can happen"

Yvon Ledanois (BMC) told lavuelta.com about his team's strategy after Nicolas Roche won 29" yesterday : “Everybody focused on (Vincenzo) Nibali. Everyone was scared of Nibali, a little bit of Contador. In the end, it was such a winding downhill, as soon as you took 25 metres, you were out of sight. Orica started pulling too late, they lost 30 seconds. If you want to win something out of La Vuelta, you can't focus on the others. You have to ride your own race. I don't watch what Nibali,...

14:14Peloton in control

The gap slightly increases to 3'20" after 80km.

14:02Tuft: "We're coming more and more in Chaves' territory"

Svein Tuft (Orica-Scott), the oldest rider of La Vuelta 2017 with 40 yo, spoke to  lavuelta.com about the race conditions and his team's expectaions: “At least it's warm so it's not so bad… The rain makes it dangerous when we ride through the cities. The roads could be quite tricky, quite slippery. The young guys we have here are riding really good so obviously that motivates me. Esteban Chaves, obviously, but also the Yates brothers, and now you see Jack Haig coming up… We have a...

13:55Anton, the main GC threat

Igor Anton (Dimension Data) is the best classified rider on GC in the breakaway: 18th, with a delay of 5'54" over Chris Froome (Team Sky). The Spanish climber has reasons to be inspired with today's stage as he already won at Calar Alto, in 2006.

13:51Stabilised gap

The peloton controls the break and maintains the gap around 3 minutes 67km into the stage.

13:423 minutes

The peloton lets go and the gap is up to 2'50" at km 58.

13:38Bardet, Jungels, Anton... The attackers get away

Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors), Alessandro De Marchi (BMC), Antonio Pedrero (Movistar), Lennard Hofstede (Sunweb), Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), Simon Clarke (Cannondale-Drapac), Antwan Tolhoek (LottoNL-Jumbo), Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates), Sander Armée (Lotto Soudal), Giovanni Visconti (Bahrain-Merida), Igor Anton (Dimension Data), David Arroyo (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), Conor Dunne (Aqua Blue Sport), Aldemar Reyes (Manzana Postobon) enjoy a 2'20" after 55km of hard racing.

13:3214 new attackers

The group enjoys a slight lead at km 50.

13:26New unsuccessful attacks

Two riders get caught at km 47.

13:1740km, no breakaway

Hector Saez (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) has been caught by a blazing peloton at km 40.

13:16Saez on the move

Hector Saez (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) is riding on his own with a slight advantage over the peloton.

13:13Back together

The peloton gets back to the front group at km 35. Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) had two teammates with him: Julien Duval and Hugo Houle. Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) was also there as well as Rui Costa and Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates).

13:03New attack, Bardet at the front

Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale) is part of a 14 man leading group at km 28.

13:01"Two days of rain at La Vuelta, it's strange"

It's still raining on the race. Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R-La Mondiale) reflected on the weather conditions this morning with lavuelta.com: “Two days consecutive of rain at La Vuelta, it's strange. It's not my favourite weather. I prefer the sun. But it's not too cold so I think it's not so difficult to race with the rain and 20°C. I think the final is a climb that suits me well. Today it's important to be in the breakaway.”

12:55Aru punctures

Fabio Aru (Astana) gets back to the peloton after a puncture. Everyone is still together after 21km.

12:54Hard pace, peloton together

Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) has been caught. Attacks keep flying but no one manages to get away.

12:40Alaphilippe at the front

Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) is travelling just ahead of the peloton at km 5.

12:31It is on!

The flag has been dropped under the rain (18°C).

12:18Calar Alto, 11 years later

The riders will climb all the way to the Observatorio Astronomico de Calar Alto (15.5km, 5.9%) for the third time in La Vuelta history. The first time dates back to 2004. Roberto Heras won the stage and took the race leadership on his way to the overall victory. Two years later, in 2006, Igor Anton claimed his first major professional victory when he was racing with Euskaltel-Euskadi. The Spanish climber is now participating in La Vuelta 2017 with Dimension Data.

12:07The bunch is on the move

The 179 riders still in the race are on their way to the proper start.

12:01Welcome

Welcome to the official live of stage 11 of La Vuelta 2017. The neutral start from Lorca is set at 12:05, the proper one at 12:28. A 187.5km route will lead the riders to a high-altitude finish at the astronomic observatory of Calar Alto (2,120m) after two cat-1 climbs.

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