Vuelta a España: Stage 20

Distance: 144.1km
Category: High mountains
Highest point: 1,565m

After so many tough uphill finishes, it is hard to believe that the battle for the red jersey will still be close by this point. However, if it is, what a stage this will be to finally decide it. Although this will only be the sixth finish on this infamous summit – which can be seen from the top of the Naranco, some 30km to the north – the Angliru is one of the sport's legendary climbs. The riders will approach it by the short but testing Tenebredo and Cordal passes. Its average of 10 per cent for its 12.5km suggests its difficulty but not the full extent of it. The final 6.5km average of a leg-breaking 13 per cent. It was that section that arguably cost an over-geared Bradley Wiggins the Vuelta title in 2011.

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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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