- Today I just did my best. I don’t like that steep climbs, they don’t suit me really well. Anyway, the team was great today and, in general, I also felt good. On the final climb I pushed as hard as I could, but it was not enough to stay with the leaders. However, I don’t give up at all. I did not lose much, and I am still in the game. Two more stages are coming in the end of the second week and together with the team we will keep on fighting. I am sure everything is still possible in this race. We just have to do it calmly day by day, stage by stage, - said Miguel Angel Lopez.
Stage 13, which started in Bilbao, brought the peloton of La Vuelta back in the mountains. The riders passed several climbs before hitting the final very steep Los Machucos with the maximal gradients over 25%! Astana Pro Team moved up in front of the peloton with 30 km to go, increasing the pace in the main group and starting the chase of the daily breakaway. On the first steep slopes of Los Machucos it was Nairo Quintana, who made an attack, but he was quickly followed by Astana’s Ion Izagirre with Miguel Angel Lopez on the wheel and all the favorites behind them. The last few kilometers of the climb became a place of a great battle between the GC contenders with Primoz Roglic and Tadej Pogacar attacking the rivals and playing the stage victory. Miguel Angel Lopez tried to follow them, but finally finished 7th.
In the general classification Primoz Roglic increased his lead to 2 minutes 25 seconds on Valverde and 3 minutes 1 second on Pogacar, the new leader of the best young rider classification. Miguel Angel Lopez moved to 4th place, 3 minutes 18 seconds to the current leader.
Stage 14 of the race will be held tomorrow: 188 km from San Vicente de la Barquera to Oviedo.
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