Trentin 8th as sprinters survive climbs on stage 3 of La Vuelta

Mon 27 Aug 2018

A bunch sprint prevailed on stage three of La Vuelta a Espana despite an early category one clim and over 2500m of climbing throughout the 173km stage.

Italian champion Elia Viviani (Quickstep Floors) was too fast for the rest as Mitchelton-SCOTT’s Matteo Trentin settled for eighth place, despite losing contact earlier in the day. 

A quick escape and steady opening climb:
For the second consecutive day, there was little fight for the break with today’s group of six again forming in the opening kilometres of racing. 

The group rode out to a three-minute advantage on approach to the day’s first and hardest climb, the category one Puerto del Madrono, and they had extended it to four minutes by the summit. 

Sprinters survive the day’s tests:
With their sprinter Vivani sitting pretty in the bunch over the first climb, Quickstep Floors grew in confidence and went straight to the front of the bunch to assist Team Sky in controlling the breakaway.

Their injection of pace pulled the group within arm’s reach and they hovered at a little over one minute’s advantage into the final 75km. 

Spicing it up before the final sprint:
As four riders bridged across to the front of the race inside the final 50km, Jordi Simon (Burgos-BH) tried unsuccessfully to attack his breakaway companions before a more dangerous solo move by Lukas Postlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe) had the peloton strung out in the final 20km. 

Postlberger was caught with six kilometres to the line with surviving sprint trains trying to get in formation. Despite running out of teammates in the very final, Viviani perfectly picked his wheels for a strong win.

Matteo Trentin - 8th on the stage:
“The strategy for today was to try to survive the climb and go for the sprint if the chance was there. I probably suffered a little bit with the heat because I dropped off the bunch at one point, but I could come back so everything was solved and back on track.

“We got a little bit boxed, but the main problem was that I was behind a gap after the last roundabout and the option for the win was not there anymore. 

“We cannot be happy about the result, but we found something to work on and the next days will be another chance so we are going to adjust some little things and try to go for the win again.”

La Vuelta – Stage 3 Results:
1. Elia Viviani (Quickstep Floors)
2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo) ST
3. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) ST
8. Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-SCOTT) ST

La Vuelta – General Classification after Stage 3:
1. Michael Kwiatowski (Team Sky)
2. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) +0:14
3. Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb) +0:25
12. Simon Yates (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +0:37

Photo courtesy of Getty Images.