Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka’s three remaining riders in Vuelta a España got safely through Tuesday’s time trial with an eye on tomorrow’s difficult mountain top finish. Jacques Janse van Rensburg was the team’s top finisher as Chris Froome (Team Sky) won the stage and increased his overall lead.
After Monday’s well-deserved rest day, a 40.2 km long individual time trial awaited the riders on stage 16. Without any specialists against the clock, the main focus for Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka was to get through the day without any incidents. Stage 17 is another very demanding day in the mountains and with only climbers left in the race, tomorrow’s stage should suit the team much better.
Janse van Rensburg did well on the course today, setting a good time as he crossed the line in 20th place out of the 80 riders who had finished at the time. Ultimately, the South African finished as number 52, while grand tour debutant Lachlan Morton (photo, stock) was 96th. Igor Antón saved as much energy as possible as he settled for 152nd on the day.
Tomorrow, the peloton takes on 180 km from Villadiego towards the steep HC-category climb Los Machucos. This will be the first finish on the climb in the history of the Vuelta. The ascent is 7.2 km long and has an average gradient of 8.7 %. However, there are countless sections of double digit gradients and parts of over staggering 30 %. This is truly a stage for the pure climbers.