ALTO DE L’ANGLIRU, Spain (AP) — Hugh Carthy prevailed on the grueling final climb at the Alto de L’Angliru to win the 12th stage of the Spanish Vuelta on Sunday, with Richard Carapaz retaking the overall lead from defending champion Primoz Roglic.
It was the first Grand Tour stage win for Carthy, who made his attack entering the final kilometer of the decisive climb. The British rider from EF Pro Cycling finished 16 seconds ahead of a group of three riders — Aleksandr Vlasov, Enric Mas and Carapaz.
Roglic crossed the line in fifth place — 26 seconds behind Carthy — and dropped 10 seconds behind Carapaz in the overall standings. Carthy entered the mix for overall winner, moving 32 seconds off the lead.
“This climb made a natural selection,” Carapaz said. “We already spent a lot of energy yesterday. And it was a very hard stage today.”
Roglic, the Jumbo-Visma rider who was a contender at the Tour de France until the final competitive stage, entered Sunday’s Vuelta stage with the same time as Carapaz, who rides for Ineos Grenadiers.
“It was too hard a climb for a sprinter,” Roglic said. “I didn’t have the best day but in the end it’s OK. I’m happy with this result.”
Riders faced five climbs in the 109.4-kilometer (67.9-mile) route that culminated with the steep slopes of the Alto de L’Angliru.
Two-time champion Chris Froome, out of contention after struggling in the first few stages, was briefly in front of the pack going into the final climb on Sunday.
Riders will get their second rest day in the three-week Vuelta on Monday. The following day they face a 33-kilometer individual time trial in a 13th stage where climbers will likely struggle and windy conditions can play a decisive role at the mostly flat seashore route.
The Vuelta is in its final week amid tight health restrictions because of the coronavirus pandemic. It ends next Sunday in Madrid.
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