On paper, this is the most straightforward stage of the race with barely a pimple hindering the riders’ progress as they head inland into the province of Sevilla.
However, the elements could make for an uncomfortable day. In this parched landscape, the heat is likely to be intense. The riders will also be watchful for echelons forming if the wind begins to gust. This threat is greatest in the first half of the stage, which runs near the sea, but remains in the open countryside of the latter half.
The finale is in the impressively imposing walled town of Alcalá de Guadáira, which is hosting its first finish. The sprinters should provide an equally impressive flourish.
José Luis Arrieta (Movistar DS):
"Like all these stages down in Andalucía, the heat could be a significant factor. If the heat is turned right up, what appear to be straightforward stages can become much more complicated. This one does look like it will certainly end in a sprint, though."
The text in this preview originally appeared in the September edition of Procycling magazine.