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Vuelta a España Vuelta a España 2023, stage 13: Formigal - Col du Tourmalet, 134.7k

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This may be a good stage for UAE. Almeida and Ayuso excel on this terrain and Jumbo may be more focused on Remco and waiting for the next day or waiting to see how Kuss does. Would be happy to be proven wrong but not overly confident about Remco on these type of stages. This is also 1% lower gradient than this year’s Tour Tourmalet route and it’s not Angliru so drafting and team dynamics should play a big role on the climb itself.
 
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Really hard for the break to take this one. With most of the start being downhill, it’s likely the move only goes on Aubisque. That leaves zero flat for the break to build a lead because the peloton isn’t softpedalling the valley between Spandelles and Tourmalet, so the peloton would have to do an impressive amount of sandbagging on the climbs for the gap to be big enough for anyone to hold on on Tourmalet. Unless we get another break with GC threats, that is.
I have the feeling that the peloton will sand bag in Aubisque.
 
Really hard for the break to take this one. With most of the start being downhill, it’s likely the move only goes on Aubisque. That leaves zero flat for the break to build a lead because the peloton isn’t softpedalling the valley between Spandelles and Tourmalet, so the peloton would have to do an impressive amount of sandbagging on the climbs for the gap to be big enough for anyone to hold on on Tourmalet. Unless we get another break with GC threats, that is.
I also think the breakaway climbers aren't that strong this Vuelta anyway.
 
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There's a 10% section about a kilometer after the start. I think Skeletor will engage megawatts here. Gonna be epic!
They will have to bring this back!
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Will be a crazy stage, I think. Think Jumbo will control it all but it will be hard as riders like Buitrago, Cras, Thomas, Rubio, Uijtdebroeks, De la Cruz or Rodriguez should try to reach the breakaway group. After tomorrow there should be only 2-3 guys left who are still able to win it all.
 
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I am kind of pessimistic for this stage. Jumbo have the red jersey, Evenepoel just has to wait for Kuss to crack or Stage 20. UAE will need to make the race, imo
Keep in mind that Sepp's new surprise job is racing for the win,maintaining the lead he has previously always been a donkey workhorse and this race is completely different because he has not been doing any water, food carrying and pace making that was his previous role. And Remco had to get a gut punch when Kuss of all people didn't lose 2-3 minutes in the time trial.. Tomorrow is going to ruin some people's life..just a question of who gets broken into bits. I am always impressed by Remco and his style of relative racing, I am always super jealous watching him finish races w gas still left in the tank.. And Kuss and the others are one good or bad climb from dropping from the top 6 or so positions.. anything can happen tomorrow and the next few days.. Sepp is in dangerous territory..
 
Someone needs to offer RCS big money to ruin their race by making this nine hour massacre Stage 20.







Edit: This should be a big one-day race.

I'm fine with a dynamic, 100 km stage including 3 of them - already a monster stage. If they use 4 of them you get circa 150 km stage, which is already among the hardest in history. Who needs long distance?
Tomorrow's stage is perfect in this regard - uphill or downhill all the time, maximum usage of mountain kilometers and huge elevation gain. Probably a big penultimate col and a smaller MTF would be better for longer action though.
 
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