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Vuelta a España: Stage 11

Distance: 38km
Category: Individual time trial
Highest point: 1,100m

The Vuelta first visited Tarazona last year for the start of a stage that ended with a Joaquim Rodríguez victory at Jaca. This time around it returns for something quite different. Following the first rest day and a long transfer from the south to the north-east, the riders will tackle the only individual time trial of the race. Extending to 38km, it's not unlike last year's test in Pontevedra, won by Swede Fredrik Kessiakof. That result suggests the specialists should come out on top but the fact that Rodríguez managed to hang on to the leader's jersey that day gives the climbers some hope of defending any gains they've made. The third-cat climb of the Moncayo is steady, the descent of it fast.

Abraham Olano: "The time trial goes through a national park, where the third-category climb should count against the specialists. A profile like this will suit those guys with the strongest legs, although you wouldn't count out someone like Wiggins. But the strong riders should top the specialists."

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Peter Cossins has written about professional cycling since 1993 and is a contributing editor to Procycling. He is the author of The Monuments: The Grit and the Glory of Cycling's Greatest One-Day Races (Bloomsbury, March 2014) and has translated Christophe Bassons' autobiography, A Clean Break (Bloomsbury, July 2014). 

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