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Vuelta a España 2009

Date range:
August 29 - September 20, 2009
  • Vuelta a España, Spain, GT
  • Stages Expand the race menu
    • Stage 1

      Distance:
      4.5km
      Start location:
      Assen
      End location:
      Assen
    • Stage 2

      Distance:
      202km
      Start location:
      Assen
      End location:
      Emmen
    • Stage 3

      Distance:
      189.7km
      Start location:
      Zutphen
      End location:
      Venlo
    • Stage 4

      Distance:
      224km
      Start location:
      Venlo
      End location:
      Lieja
    • Rest day

      Location
      Tarragona
    • Stage 5

      Distance:
      174km
      Start location:
      Tarragona
      End location:
      Vinaros
    • Stage 6

      Distance:
      177km
      Start location:
      Xativa
      End location:
      Xativa
    • Stage 7

      Distance:
      30km
      Start location:
      Valencia
      End location:
      Valencia
    • Stage 8

      Distance:
      206km
      Start location:
      Alzira
      End location:
      Alto de Aitana
    • Stage 9

      Distance:
      186km
      Start location:
      Alcoy
      End location:
      Xorret de Cati
    • Stage 10

      Distance:
      162km
      Start location:
      Alicante
      End location:
      Murcia
    • Stage 11

      Distance:
      200km
      Start location:
      Murcia
      End location:
      Caravaca de la Cruz
    • Rest Day

      Location
      Almeria
    • Stage 12

      Distance:
      174km
      Start location:
      Almeria
      End location:
      Alto de Velefique
    • Stage 13

      Distance:
      175km
      Start location:
      Berja
      End location:
      Alto de Sierra Nevada
    • Stage 14

      Distance:
      157km
      Start location:
      Granada
      End location:
      La Pandera
    • Stage 15

      Distance:
      167.7km
      Start location:
      Jaén
      End location:
      Córdoba
    • Stage 16

      Distance:
      170km
      Start location:
      Córdoba
      End location:
      Puertollano
    • Stage 17

      Distance:
      193.6km
      Start location:
      Ciudad Real
      End location:
      Talavera de la Reina
    • Stage 18

      Distance:
      187km
      Start location:
      Talavera de la Reina
      End location:
      Avila
    • Stage 19

      Distance:
      174km
      Start location:
      Avila
      End location:
      La Granja. Real Fábrica de Cristales
    • Stage 20

      Distance:
      26km
      Start location:
      Toledo
      End location:
      Toledo
    • Stage 21

      Distance:
      110.2km
      Start location:
      Rivas
      End location:
      Madrid
  • Race history

September 16, Stage 17: Ciudad Real - Talavera de la Reina 193.6km

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Gregor Brown
  1. 14:10:04 CEST

    Welcome to Cyclingnews' coverage of stage 17 of the Vuelta a España.

  2. 14:11:51 CEST

    The three-week Vuelta a España continues today with a flat 193.6-kilometre stage from Ciudad Real to Talavera de la Reina. It lacks climbs, but comes on the eve of three decisive days. The riders face two medium-mountain stages, Ávila and La Granja Real Fábrica de Cristales, and a time trial stage on Saturday in Toledo.

  3. 14:16:00 CEST

    At kilometre three Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Jens Mouris (Vacansoleil) attacked. The attack started a second, successful, escape of five with Spaniard Irizar.

    Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) escaped at kilometre six.

  4. 143.6km remaining from 193.6km

    14:19:03 CEST

    At 50km covered, the five-man escape group has five minutes. Liquigas, Milram and Columbia are managing the pace. The gap nearly touched seven minutes, 6:52, at kilometre 25.

    __ Situation __
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
    - Main group 5:00

  5. 14:19:56 CEST

    Talk about today's stage on our forum.

  6. 137.6km remaining from 193.6km

    14:20:39 CEST

    Valverde has a flat tyre.  He gets a quick change and starts to re-join.

  7. 14:21:00 CEST

    Spaniard Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne) wears the race leader's gold jersey he took nine days ago. He leads the race by 31 seconds on Gesink, 1:10 on Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi), 1:28 on Ivan Basso (Liquigas), 1:51 on Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) and 1:54 on Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia).

  8. 14:22:40 CEST

    Valverde will be one of Spain's leaders at the Worlds next Sunday in Mendrisio, Switzerland.

    "Spain has the most powerful team for this race, with three great leaders: Samuel Sánchez, Alejandro Valverde and Oscar Freire. And they will have good helpers with them," Alberto Contador told Cyclingnews.

    Read more.

  9. 14:24:56 CEST

    Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC), Damiano Cunego (Lampre-NGC) and Wouter Weylandt (Quick Step) were non-starters today.

    Italy's Ballan and Cunego went home to prepare for the Worlds. Weylandt had to leave following yesterday's crash with Roger Hammond (Cervélo TestTeam) and Julian Dean (Garmin-Slipstream) with 2.8 kilometres to race.

  10. 14:26:36 CEST

    Ballan trains in Italy today after racing his last day in the rainbow jersey of World Champion yesterday. He and Cunego, winner of two stages, left the race after stage 16 to Puertollano.

    Ballan said he that his emotions were high for the final day in the jersey he won in Varese, Italy, September 28. "It's the last time [I will race in this jersey]. Of course, who's to say I can't win it again?"

    Read more Ballan returns home, last day in Worlds' rainbow jersey.

  11. 14:27:43 CEST

    If you have any questions just post them on our forum: http://forum.cyclingnews.com/showthread.php?t=3503

     

  12. 14:29:22 CEST

    The riders reach the highest point of the stage, 880m, right after entering the province of Toledo. It is also the feed zone.

  13. 128.6km remaining from 193.6km

    14:32:04 CEST

    The sprinters' teams seem to have the five escapees right where it wants them. The gap is holding steady, near five minutes, 4:58.

    If they bring the escape back too fast there will be more counter-attacks before the finish. The ideal spot is somewhere around 10 kilometres to race.

  14. 14:34:14 CEST

    Lots of teams are announcing their riders for Worlds.  Who will win the time trial? Road race?

  15. 14:36:26 CEST

    Young Dutchman Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) is in this escape. He is sure to be a future Paris-Roubaix winner. In his debut year at the race in 2008 he finished just off the podium, in fourth.

    The five-man escape: Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)

  16. 14:37:02 CEST

    You can also follow Cyclingnews on Twitter - twitter.com/cyclingnewsfeed

  17. 14:38:43 CEST

    We are also on Facebook

  18. 122.6km remaining from 193.6km

    14:39:18 CEST

    The five have 5:12 on the main group of Valverde.

  19. 113.6km remaining from 193.6km

    14:56:45 CEST

    We are out of Ciudad Real and into the province of Toledo now. The five are holding onto a 5:05 advantage with teams Milram (for Ciolek), Columbia (Greipel) and Liquigas (Bennati) chasing. Italy's Bennati is the only one of the three without a stage win.

    Bennati said that he believes today’s 17th stage, plus the concluding leg of the race in Madrid, both offered chances to him. “I have a great desire to prove who is the real Bennati and break this bad luck,” he said.

    Read more here http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/bennati-still-hunting-for-vuelta-stage-win
     

  20. 15:02:10 CEST

    Thanks for all the posts in the forum.  Bela Verde, Bennati should have a chance today in the sprint.  He nearly had it yesterday.

  21. 104.6km remaining from 193.6km

    15:11:47 CEST

    The five escapees enter the feed zone. Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) have 5:12 on the main group.

    Milram, Liquigas and Columbia have been active in leading the chase on the five riders, who once had nearly seven minutes.

    The five are now on the highest point in the stage, 880 metres, 230 more than the start in Ciudad Real.

  22. 15:12:49 CEST

    The five escapees are near the town of Menasalbas with an advantage of 5:22.

  23. 15:14:46 CEST

    Follow Cyclingnews on Twitter - twitter.com/cyclingnewsfeed and also check out our Facebook.

  24. 94.6km remaining from 193.6km

    15:28:37 CEST

    Russian Alexander Efimkin (AG2R La Mondiale) pulls out of the Vuelta a España.

  25. 15:30:03 CEST

    Efimkin was in 69th overall, 1h23 behind race leader Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne).

    Spaniard Valverde took the race leader's gold jersey he took nine days ago. He leads the race by 31 seconds on Gesink, 1:10 on Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi), 1:28 on Ivan Basso (Liquigas), 1:51 on Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) and 1:54 on Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia).
     

  26. 83.6km remaining from 193.6km

    15:32:07 CEST

    The five escapees have 4:50 over the main group.

  27. 15:34:26 CEST

    Spain's Markel Irizar will ride at RadioShack with Lance Armstrong, who lent support during his battle with cancer. Irizar, 29, signed for the next two seasons last week.

    Armstrong lent his support with a letter when Irizar went through treatment for testicular cancer in 2002. He recovered completely, joined team Euskaltel-Euskadi in 2004 and later met Armstrong at races.

    Irizar finished 18th overall and won the mountains classification at this year's Tour Down Under. At RadioShack he will join Haimar Zubeldia, who is also from the Basque province Gipuzkoal.

    Read more here, Irizar joins Armstrong's RadioShack

  28. 68.6km remaining from 193.6km

    15:53:32 CEST

    The five's advantage has dipped to 4:25.  They have just passed through Puebla de Montalbán.

  29. 67.6km remaining from 193.6km

    15:57:12 CEST

    Dutchman Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) and his team have been riding amazingly in the Vuelta a España. Vacansoleil has Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil) up in the overall classification.

    Westra won the Tour de Picardie earlier this year. He has showed amazing fight in the Vuelta a España, especially considering his dad died right before the race started.

    The advantage is below four minutes...

    __ Situation __
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
    - Main group 3:48

  30. 16:06:23 CEST

    There is a split in the main group.

  31. 16:07:39 CEST

    Riders from Cofidis, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Xacobeo-Galicia and Contentpolis-AMPO crashed. Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia), Juan José Cobo (Fuji-Servetto) and Robert Gesink (Rabobank) were in the crash.

  32. 58.6km remaining from 193.6km

    16:08:31 CEST

    Gesink is in second overall, only 31 seconds behind race leader Valverde.

  33. 16:09:47 CEST

    He visited the doctor's car and now is re-joining the main group with the help of stage winner Lars Boom. 

    Can Boom win the Worlds TT?  He won the Under 23 version two years ago.

  34. 16:11:00 CEST

    Post your questions on our forum.

    Follow Cyclingnews on Twitter - twitter.com/cyclingnewsfeed and also check out Facebook.

  35. 16:12:59 CEST

    Ezequiel Mosquera's left side, leg and arm, is bloodied.

    Gesink has blood running down his left arm. Rabobank is pacing him back to the front, a very strong team. It helped Russian Denis Menchov win the first Grand Tour of the year, the Giro d'Italia.

  36. 55.6km remaining from 193.6km

    16:13:40 CEST

    The five's advantage is 4:04.

  37. 16:20:15 CEST

    We mentioned Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC), Damiano Cunego (Lampre-NGC) and Wouter Weylandt (Quick Step) were non-starters today. Aussie Stuart O'Grady (Saxo Bank) was also a non-starter.

    Weylandt had to leave following yesterday's crash with Assan Bazayev (Astana), Roger Hammond (Cervélo TestTeam) and Julian Dean (Garmin-Slipstream) with 2.8 kilometres to race. We are not sure on the reason O'Grady did not start.

    Italy's Ballan and Cunego went home to prepare for the Worlds.

  38. 16:22:05 CEST

    "I was in such a good position to sprint," said Bazayev of the sprint yesterday. "Schär was there too to help me and then there is a stupid spectator. He wanted to watch the race from a bit too close and I think Wouter Weylandt from Quick-Step hit him.

    "Fortunately [there were] no big injuries for me but this crash cost us a lot. My bike is banged up a lot."

  39. 43.6km remaining from 193.6km

    16:23:02 CEST

    The advantage is 3:40

  40. 38.6km remaining from 193.6km

    16:32:54 CEST

    The five riders ahead are Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil).

    They are riding with an advantage of 3:43. Each are doing equal turns at the front down the straight roads of Toledo. However, behind there are many more riders doing turns at the front. The group is led by Columbia.

  41. 16:34:09 CEST

    Yes TRDean, Dean did start today.  Thanks for writing in our forum.

  42. 16:39:23 CEST

    David Garcia (Xacobeo Galicia) brings a new helmet to his teammate Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia).

  43. 31km remaining from 193.6km

    16:40:16 CEST

    The five's advantage is 4:10

  44. 16:43:11 CEST

    Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia) crashed earlier with Robert Gesink (Rabobank). He started the day in sixth place, 1:54 behind Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne).

    Valverde leads the race by 31 seconds on Gesink, 1:10 on Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi), 1:28 on Ivan Basso (Liquigas) and 1:51 on Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto).

  45. 16:45:58 CEST

    Martin Velits (Milram) leads the group, working with team Columbia rides. He and his brother will join the USA team in 2010.

    “We are really happy,” he said. “It is a new challenge for us, for me and my brother. I think it is the best step for us to take for our careers.”

    Read more: Velits looking forward to move

  46. 23.5km remaining from 193.6km

    16:52:07 CEST

    The main group is 3:16 behind our leaders.

    __ Situation __
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
    - Main group 3:16

  47. 16:53:07 CEST

    Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) escaped at kilometre six.

    Post your questions on our forum.

    Follow Cyclingnews on Twitter - twitter.com/cyclingnewsfeed and also check out Facebook.

  48. 16:53:27 CEST

    Will this escape suceed?

  49. 20.5km remaining from 193.6km

    16:55:35 CEST

    Another crash, two Xacobeo Galicia riders go off the left side of the road.

  50. 16:57:51 CEST

    Gonzalo Rabuñal (Xacobeo Galicia) was one of the two riders. He is now back at the doctor's car. A very bad luck day for his team after the crash of Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia).

    The other team rider in the crash was Serafín Martínez (Xacobeo Galicia).

  51. 16:59:21 CEST

    Milram and Columbia are both on the front of the group, working hard to bring back the escape. We also see Kjell Carlström (Liquigas) in there, in his Finnish national champ jersey.

  52. 17.5km remaining from 193.6km

    17:00:24 CEST

    Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Saxo Bank) and Matthew Lloyd (Silence-Lotto) are in a group behind the main group of Valverde. Arvesen is a former Under 23 World Champ.

  53. 17:02:54 CEST

    Jakob Fuglsang (Saxo Bank) might also be there with teammate Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Saxo Bank). Maybe the crash held them behind.

  54. 15km remaining from 193.6km

    17:03:25 CEST

    The five are on a slight climb.

    __ Situation __
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
    - Main group 2:15

  55. 17:04:26 CEST

    Dutchman Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) leads the five.

    The group behind is having trouble pulling in the five riders.  There are more Liquigas riders on the front now.

  56. 13km remaining from 193.6km

    17:07:32 CEST

    Liquigas, Milram and Columbia are lined out in an echelon. The wind is coming from their left side.

    1:43

  57. 11.5km remaining from 193.6km

    17:09:31 CEST

    The riders are all lined down the right side of the road due to the wind. It could cause another crash as riders swerve across the road. Everyone's legs are tired.

    __ Situation __
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
    - Main group 1:30

  58. 17:10:08 CEST

    Will one of these five riders attack from the escape group soon?

  59. 17:10:49 CEST

    Dane Jakob Fuglsang (Saxo Bank) is having problems and drops behind. He looks down at his gears.

  60. 10km remaining from 193.6km

    17:11:07 CEST

    1:15 at -10k

  61. 8.5km remaining from 193.6km

    17:12:07 CEST

    The sprinters' teams are fighting at the front to control the race and bring back the five escapees: Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) and Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil).

    They have 1:10 at -8.5k
     

  62. 17:12:51 CEST

    Frantisek Rabon (Columbia-HTC) is working hard for teammate and sprinter André Greipel. Greipel has won three stages so far in this Vuelta a España.

  63. 17:13:15 CEST

    The front five are rotating in a counter-clockwise motion.

  64. 17:13:45 CEST

    Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) looks back to get a visual check on the main group.

  65. 7km remaining from 193.6km

    17:15:08 CEST

    It looks over at 7k to race. The advantage has dropped down to 43 seconds

    Soon one of the five will attack his escape companions.

  66. 17:15:29 CEST

    Liquigas leads with four riders.

  67. 6km remaining from 193.6km

    17:15:59 CEST

    Columbia is right behind the green Italian team.

  68. 17:16:30 CEST

    Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil) attacks.

  69. 4km remaining from 193.6km

    17:16:47 CEST

    The others pull him back.

  70. 3km remaining from 193.6km

    17:17:39 CEST

    Frantisek Rabon (Columbia-HTC) is hammering on the front. He is 30" behidn the front five.

  71. 17:18:09 CEST

    The front five are finished.  Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream) tries a last ditch move.

  72. 17:18:40 CEST

    Maaskant has 20" on the main group.  The other four are caught.

  73. 17:19:37 CEST

    The others are still there.

    - Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream)
    - Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux)
    - Markel Irizar (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Francisco José Martínez (Andalucía-Cajasur), Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil)
     

  74. 1km remaining from 193.6km

    17:20:14 CEST

    Maaskant, 26, is joined by Roux.

  75. 17:20:29 CEST

    Roux does not help.

  76. 17:20:43 CEST

    Now Roux attacks

  77. 17:21:01 CEST

    Maaskant sits up.  Roux continues.

  78. 17:21:37 CEST

    Greipel chases!

  79. 17:21:47 CEST

    Roux wins!

  80. 17:23:15 CEST

    Anthony Roux (Française des Jeux), 22, timed it to perfection. He chased back Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Slipstream), sat on, and then attacked.

    He went free with the other four escapees at six kilometres into the stage.

  81. 17:23:36 CEST

    2 William Bonnet (Bbox Bouygues Telecom)
    3 André Greipel (Columbia-HTC)
    4 Daniele Bennati (Liquigas)
     

  82. 17:25:34 CEST

    An impressive win by the 22-year-old Frenchman Roux.

  83. 17:26:26 CEST

    A hard day out for overall favourites Robert Gesink (Rabobank) and Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia). Both riders crashed, but finished the stage.

  84. 17:28:03 CEST

    The overall classification remains the same from yesterday.

  85. 17:36:37 CEST

    Thanks for joining our live coverage today. Please come back tomorrow for the first to two medium-mountain days.