This year’s Vuelta is the debut Grand Tour for Astana’s young Australian rider, Aaron Kemps. The first year pro will have his 23rd birthday on Sunday and said yesterday that he is trying to recover before then in the hope of doing something on stage 15.
“I am starting to get tired, as you do. I will just try to get today in the best shape possible, and then I will have a sort of a rest day tomorrow in the time trial. I will just take it easy as possible there, but then hopefully I can have a go on stage 15.
“I will see how the breaks work out. Of course, if there is a break up the road and there is no-one dangerous on GC, we are not going to chase. The main priority is for the general classification [Vinokourov and Kashechkin] and of course if it comes down to a sprint, then I will get an opportunity. If not, I will just have to work for the boys.”
Kemps said that although he has pinpointed that stage as one he would like to do well in, he doesn’t do anything special beforehand in terms of focussing.
“I still prepare the same as other stages. If the opportunity comes then I try to take it. You can sort of see by half-way what is going to happen at the end, if it is going to come down to a sprint or if a breakaway is going to take the race. If it is going to come down to a sprint, obviously I will save my legs more, try to do a little less work for the other guys and then be right up there in the last 20 kilometres.
“As regards the sprinters on the team, me and Assan [Bazayev] are about the same. He won a stage at the Tour of Germany, I won a stage at the Tour of Burgos. So we will both try to have a go, whoever is feeling a bit better gets helped by the other. The other day, for example, he was feeling a bit better than I so I gave him a lead out to the finish.”