Originally Posted by Eshnar
so, can you recap all the rumours you got so far?
Considering the presentation is only 10 days away, there is a great deal of uncertainty.
What is known is there will be no less than 10, probably 11, possibly 12 MTFs. There's even been talk, in the press, of 13 MTFs.
Angliru will be climbed in the last stage before Madrid, and Unipublic have very clear intentions of toning the route down (even for their standards) in a clear effort to make the race stay close until Angliru. I'm not in the mood for a complete stage-by-stage description as you do with the Giro, but here's the overall picture I got from rumours and personal guesses:
Start in Galicia with a longer-than-usual TTT, then a couple of tricky stages ending in short Murs. One of them could feature the Mirador de Ezaro (2kms at 14%) the Vuelta unveiled this year, this time as a mountain pass, albeit quite far from the finish.
Moving down south with a stage finish around the Lago de Sanabria. Although they could do this:
They'll probably just finish here:
Then they'll head down towards Andalusia, finishing on Peñas Blancas: http://www.cyclingcols.com/profiles/PenasBlancasS.gif
and they'll then prostitute my baby by finishing on the Dornajo crossroads of this: http://unavueltamejor.files.wordpres...l-sabinas3.png
Who knows if they'll decide to include some climbs before those MTFs... on the Dornajo stage they should at least climb Monachil first.
It's not clear where they'll head to after that. There's been talks of a finish on the short and steep Valdepeñas climb again, and then I've read rumours about a mysterious huge new climb overlooking the Mediterranean sea in Catalonia. This: http://www.cyclingcols.com/profiles/Caro.gif
? Or perhaps this: http://www.cyclingcols.com/profiles/TuroDeLHomeW.gif
? My guess is it'll probably end up being simply this: http://www.ramacabici.com/altimetrias/ratpenat.PNG
Then we get to the Pyrenees, where the Andorran government has been publicly trying to get Unipublic to make a proper mountain stage out of the Collada de la Gallina stage, including more previous climbs than they used this year. Unipublic, of course, is pushing for the Andorrans to accept a washed down version.
After that, there have actually been rumours about a French stage, but that's all I know. Then there will be a finish on Formigal: http://www.altimetrias.net/public/formigal.gif
with a couple of half-*** climbs before it at best.
The only ITT will probably take place around the beautiful town of Tarazona, and it will feature a hardish climb.
After that they'll head west towards Asturias, maybe stopping at Peña Cabarga on their way.
In any case, I'll be very surprised if we get even one real mountain stage. Actually scratch that, they might load up the Angliru stage, climbing San Lorenzo, Cobertoria and Cordal before it or something like that. Just because once you set out to do things as terribly as possible, you might as well go all the way.