La VUELTA’19 Stage 14: Bennett Beats Battered Bunch!
Vuelta Stage Report: Bora-Hansgrohe’s Sam Bennett won the Vuelta’19 stage 14 in a crash marred final. The Irishman was by far the fastest in the slightly up-hill sprint-finish on Oviedo. Maximiliano Richeze (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) was second ahead of Tosh van der Sande (Lotto Soudal) in third. A big crash in the last kilometre finished the stage early for many riders, including Alejandro Valverde and Tadej Pogacar. Everyone eventually crossed the line, except Luka Mezgec.
A big crash ruined the final of stage 14 – But Sam Bennett probably would have won
Stage 14 Route with Joaquim Rodríguez – San Vicente de la Barquera > Oviedo 188 km:
A flat stage along Spain’s northern coastline towards Gijon. The final climb up to the Alto de la Madera will provide the gateway to the finish in Oviedo. The sprinters will set their teams to work on controlling the stage, trying to stop any breakaway from crossing the line first.
The 163 remaining riders left from San Vincente de la Banquera to cover the fairly easy 188 kilometres to Oviedo. Immediately after the official start, six riders escaped. Harm Vanhoucke, Silvan Dillier, Luka Pibernik, Stéphane Rossetto, Salvatore Puccio and Diego Rubio were not chased by the peloton.
Irish champion Sam Bennett at the start and looking forward to a sprint finish
The peloton on the bridge out of San Vicente de la Barquera
Sprinter teams took control
The break built up a 6 minute lead within 12 kilometres. Bora-Hansgrohe and Deceuninck – Quick-Step took command of the peloton, reducing the lead quickly.
Cantabria is a very nice part of northern Spain – A favourite for PEZman Al Hamilton
Deceuninck – Quick-Step were working for their fast finisher; Fabio Jakobsen
Until the six leaders were caught they had to make do with a lead of around 2 minutes. With such a small lead, Rossetto saw no chances for a stage win, and so the Frenchman sat up with 70 kilometres to go.
The break of the day to Oviedo: Salvatore Puccio, Harm Vanhoucke, Silvan Dillier, Dylan Teuns, Stéphane Rossetto, Diego Rubio Hernandez
The leading group persisted for a very long time. On the Alto La Madera the five successfully defended a lead of 50 seconds, and entered the final 20 kilometres still with this lead in hand.
The escape was held to around 2 minutes
In the peloton all the sprinters held their ground on the Cat 3 climb. Fabio Jakobsen was close to the front, while Sam Bennett tucked himself in further back. When the climb was over, the sprinter teams were able to fully open the throttle, after which the hunt for the escape group was really on.
Tony Martin led the peloton for a long time, but eventually the sprinter’s team took over
Second by second, the four front riders were shut down, Rubio had already dropped out. With 5 kilometres to go, the curtain came down for the other four riders and the spectators in Oviedo could look forward to a bunch sprint.
Another Slovenian on la Vuelta – Luka Pibernik of Bahrain-Merida was in the break
Bora-Hansgrohe took the initiative for Bennett in the last 3 kilometres. Deceuninck – Quick-Step benefited from the work of the German WorldTour team. Jakobsen’s team came through in the last kilometre. At that moment a major crash took place in the middle of the peloton. The crash meant the end of la Vuelta for Luka Mezgec, who came down hard.
Another stage win for the Irish champion – Sam Bennett
Bennett wins easily
Twenty riders continued to fight it out at the front and compete for the stage victory. Van der Sande was the first to go on the uphill closing meters, after which Jakobsen had to pass. When Bennett started his sprint at 250 meters from the finish, it became clear that he would win. Only Richeze was able to stay close to the winning Irishman.
Vuelta’19 stage win No.2
Stage winner, Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe): “The crash didn’t impact the way I sprinted. I heard it but it was behind me. Quick-Step and UAE Team Emirates were well organised for the sprint so I followed them. When I crossed the line I thought the break might still be away. I was afraid to celebrate for second, it would have been ridiculous. I only knew I had won once my mechanics told me. I feel relieved like I felt after my first win. You have to wait so long before you get another sprint. I was feeling useless for the past eleven days so when a sprint comes, you have to perform. It was the same level of pressure and I’m delighted.”
The final K
Vuelta a España Stage 14 Result:
1. Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe at 4:28:46
2. Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
3. Tosh Van der Sande (Bel) Lotto Soudal at 0:02
4. Marc Sarreau (Fra) Groupama-FDJ at 0:05
5. Clément Venturini (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
6. Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar
7. Jonas Koch (Ger) CCC
8. John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo
9. Max Walscheid (Ger) Sunweb
10. Szymon Sajnok (Pol) CCC
11. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension Data
12. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:18
13. Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Katusha-Alpecin
14. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates at 0:20
15. Edward Theuns (Bel) Trek-Segafredo at 0:24
16. Jetse Bol (Ned) Burgos-BH
17. Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Ineos
18. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana
19. Dorian Godon (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
20. Sergio Andres Higuita Garcia (Col) EF Education First at 0:33
21. Fabio Jakobsen (Ned) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
22. Ion Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Astana
23. Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:35
24. Nikias Arndt (Ger) Sunweb at 0:38
25. Hermann Pernsteiner (Aut) Bahrain-Merida at 0:43.
Vuelta a España Overall After Stage 14:
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 53:49:19
2. Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar at 2:25
3. Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 3:01
4. Miguel Ángel López (Col) Astana at 3:37
5. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar at 5:21
6. Rafał Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 7:02
7. Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis at 8:12
8. Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal at 9:25
9. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Sunweb at 10:31
10. Dylan Teuns (Bel) Bahrain-Merida at 9:58
11. Hermann Pernsteiner (Aut) Bahrain-Merida at 10:03
12. Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott at 11:30
13. Sergio Andres Higuita Garcia (Col) EF Education First at 11:52
14. George Bennett (NZ) Jumbo-Visma at 13:40
15. Esteban Chaves (Col) Mitchelton-Scott at 14:25
16. Ion Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Astana at 14:51
17. Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar at 15:27
18. James Knox (GB) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 16:46
19. Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Katusha-Alpecin at 18:13
20. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana at 19:13
21. Kilian Frankiny (Swi) Groupama-FDJ 0:20:41
22. Robert Gesink (Ned) Jumbo-Visma at 26:22
23. Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale at 30:10
24. Peter Stetina (USA) Trek-Segafredo at 33:09
25. François Bidard (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale at 34:32.