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Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 13 preview

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Profile stage 13 of 2021 Vuelta a España

Profile stage 13 of 2021 Vuelta a España (Image credit: Unipublic)
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Map stage 13 of 2021 Vuelta a España

Map stage 13 of 2021 Vuelta a España (Image credit: Unipublic)

Stage 13: Belmez - Villanueva de la Serena

Date: August 27, 2021 

Distance: 203.7km 

Stage timing: 12:18 - 17:30 CEST

Stage type: Flat

Vuelta a España stage 13 preview video

This is one of two clear opportunities for the sprinters in the remaining week or so of the Vuelta a España. However, while the profile looks straightforward, the chance to fight for victory may not come easily to them. At almost 204km, this is a long stage by recent Vuelta standards. More significantly, it runs through the heart of Extremadura, a land of extremes, particularly when it comes to the heat, which can be fierce at this time of year.

It starts in the village of Belmez, which is overlooked by an impressive 13th century castle. The riders will head north-west, the road rolling towards Peraleda de Zaucejo, where the route turns northwards towards Monterrubio de la Serena, rolling still, and then to the intriguingly-named town of Cabeza del Buey – ox head.

The route continues to the north to cross the huge Embalse de la Serena reservoir, then strikes out more directly towards the finish town of Villanueva de la Serena. The intermediate sprint comes just before it, as the riders pass through Don Benito. From there just 11km remain to the line, where the sprinters should sort out the day’s honours between them on the slight rise up the finish, assuming the Extremaduran heat hasn’t withered their hopes and resources.

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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