Past stages have been quite obvious with only 3-10 riders having a realistic chance at the win. Stage 10 is an entirely different story. No big mountains nor completely flat. Breakaway or strong sprinter? Lets find out.
Its a bit hilly but mostly flat, however the finish is uphill, 1.5km, 5.9% avg, which might give chances to a breakaway or a strong sprinter like Cort Nielsen or Aranburu. One thing is for sure, the likes of Bennett, Ackermann and Philipsen won’t be as confident as in a flat stage.
The Chase That will make things more interesting for sure, because of the 3 possible teams controlling the early breakaway DQS has quite a lot of options for in the breakaway with Cavagna, Stybar, Steimle and Bagioli. So I think they will prefer to get a guy in the breakaway instead of working all day for a sprint.
UAE has a bunch of riders who we have seen in the break numerous times already, however half their team are climbers and for them this stage will be too easy to have a chance for the stage win. However besides Philipsen they also have Riabushenko, a more puncheur type rider. This finish should suit him pretty good. Therefore I think UAE might control the race but they dont have the big engines to do it alone if the breakaway is bigger than lets say 5 riders, they are gonna need help.
That help could come from Bora, Ackermann was climbing really well on stage 8, they got the team aswell. So we got 2 teams having interest in chasing, lets go to part 2.
The Breakaway So I already named Cort Nielsen and Aranburu, they are favorites even if the peloton sprints it out for the stagewin. But I think it will be more likely these guys will try to join the breakaway themselves possibly with a teammate. A few more riders have a chance from both scenarios. Look at Mitchelton, they got Dion Smith and Robert Stannard. 2 riders with plenty of punch and they can survive the climbs. Fast and Strong are the key strenghts of the winning rider tomorrow. Other riders that have a chance from a potential breakaway are Roux, Godon, Barbero, Valgren and Aberasturi. Godon showed good form already this Vuelta But he crashed today on stage 9. We don’t have much information on any injurys though so if he is fit enough to fight for the stagewin is a guess. This might be one of the best chances for Aberasturi this Vuelta and his team will give him full support so he is a good pick as well. To summarize:
*** Magnus Cort Nielsen, Alex Aranburu
** Pascal Ackermann, Jasper Philipsen, Sam Bennett
* Smith, Stannard, Steimle, Cavagna, Godon, Stybar, Roux. Godon, Valgren, Barbero, Aberasturi, Riabushenko, Bagioli