Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers) won the stage 10 time trial at the Vuelta a España on Tuesday, taking the victory on a mostly flat course in Valladolid. The 27-year-old Italian was 16 seconds faster than runner-up Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-QuickStep), with Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) taking third on the day.
In the broader GC battle, race leader Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) was among the biggest winners on the day, putting in a solid ride to finish 13th on the day and hold onto his race lead.
- Stefan Bissegger (EF Education-EasyPost) spent some time in the hot seat early on, but Ganna smashed his mark with a time of 27:39 on the 25.8 km course. He then settled into the hot seat to wait for his rivals, most of them GC contenders, to set out.
- It wasn’t until the last few starters of the day that Ganna had any serious challengers for the stage. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) put in a (relatively) disappointing ride to finish 10th, 1:18 off of Ganna’s pace, but Roglič and Evenepoel were both putting in great rides out on the course.
- Nonetheless, neither Roglič nor Evenepoel – nor anyone else for that matter – could best Ganna’s mark. As Evenepoel crossed the line, Ganna flashed a thumbs up to the camera.
- The intermediate splits showed that Kuss was on a good ride of his own, at least relative to expectations. Kuss finished a respectable 1:29 down on Ganna and held onto red, with Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates) gaining 16 seconds on him but still sitting 26 seconds down on GC.
- Ganna finally took a big time trial victory this year ahead of Evenepoel, who bested him on the opening stage of the Giro d’Italia and again at the World Championships. The course could hardly have suited Ganna better. On a flat, medium-distance route, his specialist skillset really shined.
- Vingegaard’s underwhelming showing may help bump him down the pecking order at Jumbo-Visma. He may be the reigning Tour de France champ, but Kuss is in red and Roglič is clearly on flying form.
- A flat time trial seemed like the biggest potential hurdle to a Kuss GC push, and he has now made it past that test in the race lead. From here on out, all of the GC challenges will be more in his wheelhouse …
- Soler also put in a solid ride, given what were probably some pretty low expectations around his ability against the clock. With Soler, João Almeida, and Juan Ayuso, UAE has three riders sitting inside the top 10.
Quote of the day
Evenepoel seemed to have mixed feelings about his performance on the day, gaining some GC time but perhaps not as much as he would have liked, and settling for runner-up honors on the stage as well.
After about 10 minutes I had a difficult moment, that’s where I lost it. I was able to keep up with [Ganna] after that and get ahead of the rest of the field, but it wasn’t my best day. However, I do think that I should just be satisfied.
Can Sepp Kuss win this Vuelta? It is certainly starting to seem like a possibility, as if social media really has succeeded in willing “GC Kuss” into existence.
Speaking of Kuss, Ganna won the day but he may need to practice his celebration a bit more if he wants to hang with the red jersey.
After Tuesday’s time trial, Wednesday’s stage 11 will cover mostly flat roads, right up until the very end of the day, where riders will suddenly be tested with a first-category climb. The ascent is 6.5 km in length with a 6.8 percent average gradient, which is not especially hard in and of itself, but the last bit angles upward into the double digits. That will make it a major opportunity for the GC riders to pick up time. That said, the break could battle for the stage. In any case, Roglič, Vingegaard, and Evenepoel look like worthy favorites.
What did you think of this story?