Hello there. Hope you're well rested. The Vuelta a España is back, and today we embark on the second week with a stage that could prove pivotal in the fight for the overall title. We're not in Spain, but have crossed over into France for a 36.2km individual time trial in Pau. The top four are separated by just 20 seconds at the moment - that will almost certainly not be the case by the end of the day.
We're not far away from the start of the stage. Lennard Hofstede (Jumbo-Visma) will be the first rider down the start ramp at 13:41 local time, so in just a few minutes' time.
The riders will set off, in reverse order of the general classification, at one-minute intervals, until the top 20, who will be separated by two minutes.
Hofstede is down the ramp and the stage 10 TT is underway
Tony Martin gets underway now, the seventh rider off. He's the pick of the early starters, having won the time trial world title on four occasions. The German has done plenty of work for his GC leader, Primoz Roglic, and there'll be plenty more of it to come, but he should be allowed to open the taps here and should post a strong early time.
You can see the profile of the 36.2km course on your screens, but what's it really like? We sent Alasdair Fotheringham to find out.
Disclaimer: he cheated and did it in a car.
Intermediate checkpoints at km11.9 and km24 will give us an indication as to how the race is unfolding.
⏱ TT recon in Pau! @SupermanlopezN #AstanaProTeam #LaVuelta19 pic.twitter.com/lcuZfWQ4haSeptember 3, 2019
Miguel Angel Lopez there, checking out the course a little earlier. A couple of things we've learned from that. His left knee is bandaged up after that crash on the gravel and in the storm on that crazy stage in Andorra two days ago. He was on the front foot there but went on to lose time to all his main rivals. Lopez does not have a good record against the clock, and if he's carrying a knock the damage to Roglic here could be ugly.
The second thing? Those uphill sections are pretty nasty and the course is perhaps tougher than it looks on paper. Then again, you'll know that if you read Alasdair's preview.
Pawel Bernas (CCC Team) is the fastest so far at the first intermediate checkpoint (km11.9) with a time of 19:57.
Tony Martin, as it turns out, seems to be saving himself here. He reaches the first checkpoint in 21:35, which is 1:38 slower than Bernas.
Vasil Kiryienka (Team Ineos) reaches the checkpoint in 19:38, the fastest so far. Now there's a former world champion who might be heading for a spell in the hotseat.
Bernas has gone through the second intermediate checkpoint (km24) in 35:40.
Primoz Roglic is widely regarded as the favourite for today's stage. Even if he doesn't win it outright, he should, as a far superior time triallist than his rivals, move into the red jersey as overall leader, having started the day second overall at just six seconds from Quintana. The damage, however, could be measured in minutes, rather than seconds, and Quintana, Lopez, and Valverde could be left with a heft deficit to make up in the remaining mountain stages.
Alasdair Fotheringham has this analysis piece from the rest-day:
Will Barta (CCC Team) has made a very strong start. He posts 19:11 at the first checkpoint, knocking 27 seconds out of Kiryienka.
Meanwhile, Kiryienka has gone through the second check fastest. He's 13 seconds up on Bernas.
Bernas crosses the finish line with a time of 50:55. That's an average speed of 42.658kph.
Molano, Troia and Hofstede have also finished, but are all over two minutes down on Bernas.
It's a big day for French time trial champion Benjamin Thomas (Groupama-FDJ), as he tells the Vuelta website.
"This time trial is a big goal. It’s the best stage for me to shine. I hope I’ve recovered well from the stage in Andorra and I can have a good day. It’s a big coincidence to be in France for the ITT on a Grand Tour that is not the Tour de France.
"I’ll seize this opportunity, furthermore because I have family in Pau. I’m very happy to wear my French national champion jersey for the first time, since I only rode the Tour of Poland since the championships and there was no TT there, and we don’t wear the jerseys for TTTs"
Manuele Boaro is second-fastest at the finish, 48 seconds down on Bernas. He was 55 seconds behind the CCC man at the second check so made up some time on the run to the finish.
Kiryienka blows away Bernas' time in Pau. The Ineos rider is fastest at the finish. He's 38 seconds up after being 13 seconds up at the second check.
Current standings at the finish:
Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Team Ineos 0:50:17
Jelle Wallays (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:00:28
Pavel Bernas (Pol) CCC Team 0:00:38
Manuele Boaro (Ita) Astana Pro Team 0:01:26
Max Walscheid (Ger) Team Sunweb 0:02:15
Barta has blitzed the course through to the second checkpoint. He's just gone through with a time of 34:30, 57 seconds faster than Kiryienka.
Benjamin Thomas passes the first checkpoint, six seconds down on Barta.
49:17 for Barta at the finish. He goes top of the leaderboard, a full minute faster than Kiryienka.
Now Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck-QuickStep) is fastest at the first checkpoint, beating Barta's time over the opening 11.9km by 26 seconds.
Cavagna continues his charge. He passes two riders on his way to the second checkpoint, where he registers a time of 33:29 - a full minute quicker than Barta.
And there we go. Benjamin Thomas, the French champion, crosses the finish line and beats Barta by six seconds.
Patrick Bevin (CCC Team), Nelson Oliveira (Movistar), and Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) are three strong rouleurs who have recently rolled down the ramp.
Cavagna is heading into the final kilometre now and still looks strong. He's heading for the hotseat.
Cavagna storms into the lead
The Frenchman catches yet another rider as he turns into the home straight, gives it everything to the line, and stops the clock on 47:32. That knocks some 1:39 out of Thomas' benchmark.
We've now got some riders who look like challenging Cavagna.
Paddy Bevin crosses the first checkpoint just a second slower. Swedish champion Tobias Ludvigsson is two seconds down and his Groupama-FDJ teammate Bruno Armirail is fourth at 21 seconds.
And now Oliveira crosses that first checkpoint at just five seconds.
Ludvigsson has haemorrhaged time between the two checkpoints. He was two seconds down on Cavagna at the first but now finds himself 1:11 down. Having caught his minute-man, Zdenek Stybar, on the early section, he was caught on the downhill and then Stybar overtook him again on the climb just past the half-way point.
It's hotting up. De Gendt is three seconds down on Cavagna at the first checkpoint, but now we have a joint fastest time there, from Lawson Craddock (EF Education First).
Here are the best times so far at the first checkpoint (km11.9)
1. Remi Cavagna (Deceuninck-QuickStep) - 18:45
2. Lawson Craddock (EF Education First) - +00:00
3. Patrick Bevin (CCC Team) - +00:01
4. Tobias Ludvigsson (Groupama-FDJ) - +00:02
5. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) - +00:03
6. Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) - +00:05
Bevin on a roll
The Kiwi rider reaches the second checkpoint and posts the fastest time so far, three seconds up on Cavagna.
Oliveira, meanwhile, fades slightly, and is 22 seconds down at the second check.
Here comes De Gendt, who is also fading slightly. The Belgian, riding his third Grand Tour of the season, is 29 seconds down on Bevin now at the second check.
Ludvigsson hauls himself into the home straight and crosses the line for fourth place, some 1:50 down on Cavagna, having been two seconds down a third of the way in. Too hard too early, it seems.
We're getting there now. Just 20 riders left to set out, and they're the top riders on the general classification. This is where the stage really hots up.
A reminder that you can find the full start times here.
Craddock loses a little ground between the two checkpoints. He's third so far at the second check, 14 seconds down on Bevin's time.
New fastest time
Bevin comes into the home straight, he's fading, he looks spent, but he manages a couple more revolutions of a huge gear to stop the clock on 47:30 - that's two seconds better than Cavagna, who is ushered out of the hotseat.
Here's how it stands at the second checkpoint, before the GC riders come along
1. Patrick Bevin (CCC Team) - 33:36
2. Remi Cavagna (Deceuninck-QuickStep) - +00:03
3. Lawson Craddock (EF Education First) - +00:14
4. Nelson Oliveira (Movistar) - +00:22
5. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) - +00:29
Oliveira comes to the line and takes third place provisionally, 37 seconds down on Bevin.
Thomas De Gendt continues to fade and comes to the line 56 seconds down on Bevin.
The riders are setting off at two-minute intervals now, to give the GC riders more space. George Bennett (Jumbo-Visma), 15th overall, rolls down the ramp.
47:53 for Craddock at the finish line, which puts the American third at the moment. A very decent ride indeed.
Pierre Latour (AG2R) is going well. He's nine seconds down at the first checkpoint.
Quintana is currently on a turbo trainer inside the Movistar truck, wearing his leader's red skinsuit. Just over a quarter of an hour until he sets off. The Colombian is a climber but probably a better time triallist than he's given credit for.
Wilco Kelderman (Sunweb), 9th at 3:53, sets off. He had a disappointing start to the race but is back in the top 10 and this time trial could see him gain a little ground.
And now Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe), 8th at 3:22, sets off.
No recent changes at the top of the standings at the two intermediate checkpoints, so it will be down to the GC riders. Bevin should be in the hotseat for a little while longer but he'll be in for a nervy 45 minutes once Roglic sets off.
Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) rolls down the ramps, and with that we're into the top five. The 20-year-old Slovenian is having an extraordinary Grand Tour debut, winning the stage in Andorra two days ago. What can he do against the clock? He's wearing the Slovenian champion's skinsuit, so he's no slouch.
Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), 4th overall at 20 seconds, gets going. He should lose time to Roglic but he's likely to fare better than Quintana and Lopez.
And here is Lopez, in the white skinsuit as best young rider. His record against the clock is poor, and it's difficult to see him ending up anywhere other than fourth overall at the end of today.
Lopez is expecting to lost between 1:30 and 2 minutes, as he told reporters yesterday.
And now for Roglic. The Slovenian, bedecked in green as leader of the points classification, puffs his cheeks out as he gets ready to go. He's the one everyone's watching today, and he sets out with intent. Here we go.
Last rider starts
Nairo Quintana looks composed as he takes to the ramp. He breathes in through the nose and out through the mouth. He's bound to lose the red jersey, he knows that, but the aim will be to limit the damage to Roglic to something that's retrievable later in the race.
That's it then, everyone's off. We're around three quarters of an hour away from knowing the impact this time trial has had on the Vuelta.
Marc Soler (Movistar) has the seventh best time at the second checkpoint, 30 seconds down on Bevin, closely followed by Daniel Martinez (EF Education First) at 42 seconds.
Kelderman doesn't look at his best, still. He's 36 seconds down on the best time at the first check, while Majka is 35 seconds down.
Live timings - and past experience tells us to take these with a pinch of salt - puts Roglic 19 seconds up on Quintana after nine minutes or so.
Martinez comes to the finish and takes 7th provisionally, 1:03 down on Bevin.
Latour has also just finished, and he's 5th provisionally, 49 seconds down.
A decent ride from Soler, who crosses the line for 6th place as it stands, 57 seconds down on Bevin.
Pogacar hits the first checkpoint (11.9km) and takes the fastest time, some 11 seconds up on Cavagna's previous benchmark.
Let's see how Valverde's getting on at that first checkpoint. 18:51. That's eighth fastest so far, and he's 17 seconds down on Pogacar at this point.
Live timings suggest Lopez is going better than Quintana on the early part of this course...
19:17 for Lopez at the first checkpoint. That's 42 seconds down on Pogacar, who has made himself our reference point in terms of the battle between the overall favourites.
But here comes Roglic! And the Slovenian is once again our brenchmark. 18:14 is his time at the first checkpoint. That's 21 seconds quicker than Pogacar.
Quintana is the last rider to the first checkpoint, and there we'll assess how the favourites are going. The Colombian stops the clock on 19:39. That's 1:26 down on Roglic. Still 24km to go. Ouch.
Here's the GC picture at the first checkpoint (km11.9)
Roglic – 18:13
Pogacar – 18:34
Valverde – 18:51
Lopez – 19-17
Quintana – 19:39
Esteban Chaves (Mitchelton-Scott), who lost time in Andorra two days ago, crosses the line 3:37 down on Bevin.
Carl Frederik Hagen is two minutes down at the second checkpoint. Majka is doing a solid ride, 1:15 down.
Having posted the second best time at the first checkpoint, the Slovenian is sixth as it stands at the second checkpoint, 29 seconds down on Bevin's benchmark.
And now for Valverde at the second check. 34:01, putting him six seconds down on Pogacar, having been 17 seconds down at the first check.
Lopez hits the second check, and he's still ahead of Bevin on the road. He's 1:17 down on Bevin there but we'll wait for Roglic, who's not far away himself.
Roglic fastest at the second checkpoint
33:07 for the Jumbo-Visma rider after 24km. That's the fastest time but it's worth noting that he's 19 seconds up on Bevin now, having been 33 seconds up at the first checkpoint.
Here comes Quintana. What's the damage now?
35:19. That's 2:12 down on Roglic after 24km.
GC picture at second checkpoint (km24)
Roglic – 33:07
Pogacar – 33:55 (+48)
Valverde – 34:01 (+54)
Lopez – 34:39 (+1:32)
Quintana – 35:19 (+2:12)
Roglic is already a more than a minute up on the new provisional general classification. He's heading for a handsome margin, and quite probably the stage win.
Valverde has limited his damage to Roglic to less than a minute so far. Lopez is performing slightly better than expected and Quintana worse than expected.
Nicolas Edet, 7th at the start of the day, finishes more than three minutes down on Bevin, who's still in the hotseat.
The Movistar leadership conundrum has hovered since the start of the race, as it seemingly does every year. Quintana took a win on stage 2 and the red jersey on stage 9, but it looks like the balance of power will swing back towards Valverde now.
Pogacar hits the finish line and posts a time of 48:34. That puts him 10th provisionally, 1:04 down on Bevin, whom he led by 12 seconds at the first checkpoint. Youthful exuberance, perhaps, from the Slovenian, who set off fast but couldn't sustain that pace.
Pogacar should get himself close to Quintana and Lopez by the day's end, though.
Here comes Valverde, sprinting out of the saddle before settling back down to cross the line. 48:43 for the Spaniard, 1:13 down on Bevin, nine seconds down on Pogacar.
Roglic is almost upon Lopez in the final kilometre. They started two minutes apart.
Roglic catches him and eases clear ahead of the final bend in the final 250m. Lopez gives it everything and manages to stay behind Roglic to the line, and they cross almost at the same time.
47:05 for Roglic. That's 25 seconds better than Bevin and gives him the stage win.
49:05 for Lopez (quick maths)
Just Quintana left out there now. The damage is going to be up above three minutes at this rate.
Roglic's time ticks by and Quintana is still some way off the finish line.
Quintana rounds the final bend, springs out of the saddle, sits back down, and drags himself to the line...
50:11 for Quintana. That's 3:06 lost to Roglic, and that's a big, big blow.
Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) wins stage 10 of the Vuelta a España
Here's how the GC contenders stacked up on the stage
Roglic – 47:05
Stage 10 result
1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:47:06
2 Patrick Bevin (NZl) CCC Team 0:47:30
3 Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:47:32
4 Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First 0:47:53
5 Nelson Oliveira (Por) Movistar Team 0:48:07
6 Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:48:19
7 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:48:26
8 Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team 0:48:27
9 Dylan Teuns (Bel) Bahrain-Merida 0:48:33
10 Daniel Martinez (Col) EF Education First 0:48:33
"Every time trial you try to do as fast possible, and it was the same mission today. I'm happy with the performance for sure. I just tried to go all the time as fast as possible and yeah, it was enough at the end."
Roglic is asked if he has the Vuelta won, and he says...
"That we will see in Madrid. For sure I won today but we have to go day by day.|
General Classification after stage 10
1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Team Jumbo-Visma 36:05:29
2 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:52
3 Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana Pro Team 0:02:11
4 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team 0:03:00
5 Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates 0:03:05
6 Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal 0:04:59
7 Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:05:42
8 Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis Solutions Credits 0:05:49
9 Dylan Teuns (Bel) Bahrain-Merida 0:06:07
10 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:06:25
Here's our report page, where you can find our write-up, full results, and a photo gallery
So, Roglic, as expected, makes huge inroads. He showed no sign of fatigue after his post-stage 9 helicopter from Andorra to Pau was turned around half-way due to bad weather, and has put himself in pole position to win this Vuelta
Valverde moves up to second place but will be disappointed given he was 54 seconds down on Roglic after 24km and then lost another 44 seconds in the final 12km. That puts him just under two minutes down on GC.
Lopez will be as happy as he can be. He put in one of his better performances against the clock, shaking off his crash two days ago to finish pretty much in line with what he predicted.
Quintana will be licking his wounds. Losing more than three minutes to Roglic is disastrous.
Pogacar is on the up and up. The 20-year-old may not have been able to sustain the blistering pace at which he started the TT but nevertheless enters the fight for the podium in a dream Grand Tour debut that keeps on giving.
That's my snap analysis. My colleagues Barry Ryan and Alasdair Fotheringham will have all the main riders and talking points covered as they file their stories from Pau.
That's it from us today. Thanks for following along. Keep an eye on the site for all the stories coming in from Spain. No, France. We'll be back tomorrow with full live coverage of stage 11. See you then
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