ORICA-SCOTT take conservative approach as breakaway contest stage 7 at La Vuelta

Fri 25 Aug 2017

After the intensity and heat of the first six days of racing, stage seven of La Vuelta allowed ORICA-SCOTT and much of the bunch to conserve energy ahead of another action-packed weekend of racing.

Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates) took the stage win from the day’s breakaway as the general classification contenders rolled across the finish line in a reduced peloton, eight and a half minutes adrift.

Amongst the front bunch of 35 riders was ORICA-SCOTT’s Esteban Chaves, Jack Haig and Adam and Simon Yates.

“Today was much easier than the past few days,” best young rider Adam Yates admitted. “It was still long, five and a half hours and everyone is tired and feeling it.” 

“It hasn’t been an easy Vuelta so far, it’s been hot and there’s been some long stages. We have another tough stage tomorrow so you can’t waste energy wrong time, you need to wait for the opportune moment and that hasn’t come yet.”

Sport director Neil Stephens confirmed the team’s approach on what was the longest stage of this year’s Tour of Spain. 

“I earmarked today as a day I wanted the guys to try to conserve as much energy as possible,” Stephens explained. “It was a long day, it wasn’t extremely hot but it was still quite warm, but it was a really demanding day.”

“There was more climbing metres today than yesterday and so I really wanted to try and back it off a bit. We have quite a hard couple of days coming up, some very critical stages, and we wanted to try to get through today’s stage as best we could. All of the boys did a good job with that.”

Part of the breakway, Jetse Bols (Manzana Postabon) has moved himself inside the top ten overall with the big gaps in the stage to see ORICA-SCOTT sit in second (Chaves), ninth (Adam Yates) and 11th (Simon Yates) after the first week of racing. 

How it happened:

The peloton set off for the longest stage of this year’s La Vuelta and within the first 20km the day’s breakaway had formed, a large group of 14 riders.

Content with the situation, the peloton allowed the gap to increase as they continued to cover the 200+km stage. With 100km to go the advantage was six-minutes 30seconds, and it continued to increase to over eight minutes. 

Despite some small echelon threats, the action never really launched and the breakaway entered the final hour of racing looking assured to contest for the victory. 

Mohoric distanced his companions on the final climb to claim the stage victory, and whilst the peloton also reduced on the same ascent, all of the general classification contenders rolled across the line together.

La Vuelta – Stage 7 Results: 

1. Matej Mohoric (UAE Team Emirates) 4:43:35
2. Pawel Poljanski (BORA-Hansgrohe) +0:16
3. Jose Rojas (Movistar Team) +0:16
19. Simon Yates (ORICA-SCOTT) +8:38

La Vuelta – General Classification after stage 7:

1. Chris Froome (Team Sky)
2. Esteban Chaves (ORICA-SCOTT) +0:11
3. Nicolas Roche (BMC Racing) +0:13

Photo courtesy of TDWsport.