La VUELTA’19 Stage 1: Astana Star in the Salt!

Vuelta Stage Report: Astana won a chaotic stage 1 team time trial in Torrevieja. The Kazakh team took 14 minutes and 51 seconds for the 13.4 long team time trial. Two seconds faster than Deceuninck – Quick-Step and Sunweb, the win put Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) into the overall lead. A crash for Jumbo-Visma lost them forty seconds.

The first leader of the 2019 Vuelta

The 13 kilometre team time trial in Torrevieja on Saturday evening would provide the first wearer of the leader’s red jersey of the 2019 Vuelta a España. Dimension Data were the first team to roll down the start ramp a few minutes before seven o’clock and Movistar was the last just after 8.

Obviously Dimension Data were the first team in the hot seat
Louis Meintjes’ team were the first to cross the line. With a time of 15 minutes and 25 seconds, so they were the first to take the hot-seat. They had to wait for teams like AG2R-La Mondiale and Euskadi-Murias, but they didn’t beat time of the South African team.

EF Education First to go top
CCC knocked Dimension Data from the hot-seat. The Polish team finished less than nineteen seconds faster than Dimension Data, this new top time did not last long. EF Education First was on the way and with a time of 14:58 they set the new best time.

Groupama-FDJ, Caja Rural-Seguros RGA and Katusha-Alpecin all couldn’t beat time of the American WorldTour team, while Team Ineos also fell short.

Mitchelton-Scott, Sunweb and Astana were some of the top contenders who would start their time trial before 8 o’clock. Mitchelton-Scott, with Esteban Chaves, also disappointed; at the finish they were 11 seconds short of knocking EF Education First off the hot-seat.

New top time for Sunweb, Astana takes over
Sunweb did not disappoint. At the first time point, the German team was 4 seconds faster than EF Education First. At the second point, Wilco Kelderman’s team had two seconds in hand, but it was enough time to overtake EF Education First.

Sunweb was able to sit in the hot-seat for only eight minutes as Astana went under the Sunweb time. The new target time was 14:51 for the final six teams that still to finish.

Disastrous team time trial Jumbo-Visma, Deceuninck – Quick-Step second
Much was expected from Jumbo-Visma and Deceuninck – Quick-Step, but both teams could not beat Astana’s time. The race was disastrous for Jumbo-Visma. The Dutch WorldTour team first saw Sepp Kuss with a mechanical problem and then four of the team crashed halfway through the time trial. At the finish the team of Primoz Roglic and Steven Kruijswijk lost 40 seconds. Deceuninck – Quick-Step were 2 seconds short at the finish.

Miguel Ángel López first leader
When Movistar finished the champagne was uncorked for Astana. Miguel Ángel López will start in the leader’s jersey on Sunday.

Overall leader, Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana): “I’m very happy because we’ve done things well. It’s been thanks to the whole team, to everyone’s effort, that we took this victory. We didn’t make a choice (as to who would cross the line first). It happened on the fly. I was 2nd behind Gorka (Izagirre) when we entered the last curve and he let me pass so I would ride the last 150 metres. We’re very happy and we’re going to enjoy every moment La Vuelta 19 gives us. We’ve worked well in the past years and the time has come (to enjoy). We have the red jersey and we’ll go with tranquility because I have a great team to support me.”

Vuelta a España Stage 1 Result:
1. Astana in 14:51
2. Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:02
3. Sunweb at 0:05
4. EF Education First at 0:07
5. Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:13
6. CCC at 0:15
7. Movistar at 0:16
8. Groupama-FDJ
9. Mitchelton-Scott at 0:18
10. Lotto Soudal at 0:19
11. Ineos at 0:25
12. Bahrain-Merida at 0:26
13. Katusha-Alpecin at 0:33
14. Dimension Data at 0:34
15. Trek-Segafredo at 0:35
16. Caja Rural-Seguros RGA at 0:37
17. AG2R-La Mondiale
18. Jumbo-Visma at 0:40
19. Cofidis at 0:43
20. Euskadi Basque Country at 0:46
21. UAE Team Emirates at 1:07
22. Burgos-BH at 1:22.

Vuelta a España Overall After Stage 1:
1. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana in 14:51
2. Dario Cataldo (Ita) Astana
3. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana
4. Ion Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Astana
5. Luis León Sanchez (Spa) Astana
6. Gorka Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Astana
7. Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:02
8. Fabio Jakobsen (Ned) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
9. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
10. Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (Arg) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
11. James Knox (GB) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
12. Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:03
13. Maximilian Walscheid (Ger) Sunweb at 0:05
14. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Sunweb
15. Nicolas Roche (Irl) Sunweb
16. Casper Pedersen (Den) Sunweb
17. Rob Power (Aus) Sunweb at 0:06
18. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) EF Education First at 0:07
19. Hugh John Carthy (GB) EF Education First
20. Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First.

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