Tour de San Luis 2016 race overview
The 2016 Tour de San Luis - the race so far
The Tour de San Luis kicked off on Monday 18 January with a challenging out and back team time trial from El Duranzo. It was a tough start to the year for many of the European teams but Etixx-QuickStep came out on top, putting in a blistering time to match the heat they were riding in. Home rider Maximiliano Richeze was the first rider to cross the line for the team, earning him the honour of the first leader’s jersey of the race.
There was little time for sentimentality for Richeze on stage two and he was put to work for young sprinting star Fernando Gaviria. The Colombian sprinter showed the same turn of speed that brought him to the attention of the cycling world last year, when he beat Mark Cavendish, to do exactly the same to world champion Peter Sagan. The result was also enough to take the leader’s jersey from his teammate.
The jersey would swap hands yet again on day three in what was expected to be a sprint finish. With only Etixx-QuickStep and Tinkoff pulling on the front of the peloton, the break were given too much room out front. A late attack from Peter Koning at the final intermediate sprint saw the Dutchman take victory and the leader's jersey. Behind him, pre-race favourites Nairo Quintana and Vincenzo Nibali went on the attack too, but they were unable to distance the bunch.
Stage 3 had just been a preview of what was to come and the peloton would have their first proper test in the mountains on stage 4 with the finish to Cerro El Amago. A large break went off the front early but after Koning had got the better of them the day before Movistar were determined not to make the same mistake again. The break was nullified ahead of the last climb and they sent Dayer Quintana up the road with a view to sending his brother Nairo to link up with him. The plan didn't work though and Eduardo Sepulveda gave Argentina their second race leader. Vincenzo Nibali had a bad day on the bike and would roll in almost five minutes down on the winner.
Stage 5 was supposed to be a simple one for the sprinters but a crash 30 kilometres from the finish ensured that the breakaway claimed victory. Several of the race favourites were caught up in the crash, including Nairo Quintana and Eduardo Sepulveda. Quintana's teammate Adriano Malori was the one who sparked the incident after his front wheel got caught in a crack in the road, he was later taken to hospital.
The final mountain day on stage 6 to Filo Sierra de Comechingones would be the one to decide the race. A tough headwind made it difficult for anyone to get away but Nairo and Dayer Quintana broke away with fellow Colombian Miguel Angel Lopez. It would be Lopez who took the victory on the day but Dayer Quintana had done enough to secure the race lead.
Tour de San Luis 2016 Race Route
The Tour de San Luis will begin with a 21-kilometre, undulating team time trial in El Duranzo. Day two will see the riders take on the longest stage of the race at 181.9 kilometres. The route brings the peloton from San Luis to Villa Mercedes, beginning with a third category ascent La Cumbre. It is likely to finish in a bunch sprint but it could lend its self to a late attack. The number of climbs increases on stage three with two third category climbs followed by the category two El Mirador del Potrero, which peaks 20 kilometres from the finish.
The first major test for the overall contenders will come on stage 4 with the summit finish on Alto del Amago. The climb featured on the same day in last year’s race and was won by eventual winner Diaz while Quintana won here on the way to victory in 2014. There are no categorised ascents on stage 5 but the course is not straightforward with plenty of undulations and an uphill climb to the finish in Juana Koslay, which may favour the likes of Sagan.
Stage 6 will be the final chance for the GC hopefuls with a second summit finish on Filo Sierras Comechingones. Like the Alto del Amago, the Filo Sierras Comechingones featured in last year’s race and is a fitting finale for the overall classification. The final day is once again for the sprinters, but in traditional San Luis style, it is anything but flat with a third category climb to kick things off.
Tour de San Luis 2015 overview
In 2015, Daniel Diaz took the overall victory over Colombia’s Rodolfo Torres and Movistar’s Nairo Quintana. The Argentinian also took two stage victories along the way. Fernando Gaviria impressed taking two stage victories early on, beating the more experienced Mark Cavendish. The Manxman did, however, walk away with a win on the final day.
2016 Tour de San Luis stages
Tour de San Luis stage 1 - El Durazno to El Durazno - 21km - Monday, January 18
Tour de San Luis stage 2 - San Luis to Villa Mercedes - 181.9km - Tuesday, January 19
Tour de San Luis stage 3 - Potrero de Los Funes to La Punta (Cabildo), 131km - Wednesday, January 20
Tour de San Luis stage 4 - Terrazas del Portezuelo to Cerro El Amago - 140km - Thursday, January 21
Tour de San Luis stage 5 - Renca to Juana Koslay - 168.7km - Friday, January 22
Tour de San Luis stage 6 - La Toma to Filo de la Sierra de Comechingones - 159.5km - Saturday, January 23
Tour de San Luis stage 7 - San Luis to San Luis - 119.6km - Sunday, January 24
2016 Tour de San Luis General Classification after stage 6
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar Team||20:15:21|
|2||Eduardo Sepulveda (Arg) Fortuneo Vital Concept||0:00:20|
|3||Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team||0:00:35|
|4||Miguel A. Lopez (Col) Astana Pro Team||0:00:38|
|5||Ilia Koshevoy (Blr) Lampre-Merida||0:01:42|
|6||Rodolfo Torres (Col) Androni Giocattoli||0:02:15|
|7||Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff-Saxo||0:02:31|
|8||Roman Villalobos (CRc) Costa Rica||0:02:41|
|9||Janier Acevedo (Col) Team Jamis||0:02:44|
|10||Andre Cardoso (Por) Cannondale||0:03:31|