Tour of Spain 2019: analysis after stage 17 Nairo Quintana


Astana and Movistar worked for Slovenian Primoz Roglic, who now takes 2:24 to Colombian Nairo Quintana.

Nairo Quintana, second in the general classification of the Tour of Spain.EFE

Nobody explains what is happening in the Tour of Spain: Nairo battling his own team, Astana defending Roglic's leadership and the quiet Slovenian leader led by his rivals who give him a hand when his team is upset and his opponents, thinking of their own interests, they put the knife in their neck and as if all this were not enough the longest stage of the Tour was run at a wild, crazy pace, as little has been seen in the past in the history of cycling.

Video: Nairo got on the podium of the Tour of Spain

This Wednesday is crazy: a sick Nairo, affected by a strong flu that feels every time he speaks, goes out to battle against the wind and against everyone in the quest for glory, perhaps with the intention of repeating that day of 2016 in which with the collaboration of Alberto Contador and his squad ended the aspirations of victory of Chris Froome. As then, it was not a fraction of a mountain but a route without too many slopes.

But unlike what happened three years ago, when the leader of the Sky was left alone in the battle, this time it was his rivals who were in charge of the big lot to defend the red shirt of Roglic and to keep it on top of the table. Although Alejandro Valverde tried to explain that his performance was perfect to favor Quintana, what they really did shows something else: that the Unzue team is only interested in defending the Valverde podium even if they finish third without having to sacrifice in their attempt to Boyacense runner. That they were put in front to break the pace of the chasing lot nobody believes it because when they did it was not to take the race to tugs in which the pace is slowly decreasing but, as if they were coequiperos of the Slovenian, they put a strong rhythm to decrease the advantage that the front group had. (Here, our special Tour of Spain)

And the performance of the Astana was not very different, or better it was even more unkempt, since if they had let Roglic wear out only in the chase they could have finished it off in the final kilometers or at least they would have left it very diminished for the stages this Thursday and Saturday in which you can see cats to defend themselves in the repeated first-class mountain awards.

With all these situations that each one explains in their own way and with three stages in which everything can happen, it is almost impossible to point out who is going to wear red on the final podium next Sunday. This Thursday and Saturday will face very hard first-class ascents in which anything can happen, in which Roglic can sink, in which surely Superman Lopez is going to attack from afar, in which Quintana can pay the effort made on Wednesday or he can show that he is one of those who arrives with more force to the third week of the great Laps, in which Valverde must normally lose his way and in the end until it is far from the podium and in which the young Tadej Pogacar can take advantage of this disorder to take advantage and repeat what not long ago Egan Bernal got in the third week of the Tour de France. (Nairo keeps fighting)

Definitely in this race nobody knows who they work for, nobody understands the technicians who are not afraid to give orders that harm their interests and nobody understands the runners who have made the final result unpredictable. The Vuelta is crazy, crazy, crazy …


2019-09-11T18: 05: 12-05: 00


2019-09-11T18: 05: 12-05: 00



Rafael Mendonza / special for El Espectador


A crazy Tour of Spain




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