Barbero 3rd after late chaos
29 April 2017

Vuelta a Asturias (st. 1)

Spaniard leads short elite field in Pola de Lena after being sent the wrong way to final Carabanzo climb; solo leader Roldán (MED) prevails as Nairo Quintana finishes with front group (14th)

A race incident influenced the final result on stage one of the 2017 Vuelta a Asturias, 169km between the region's capital Oviedo and Pola de Lena. At the third, final climb of the Alto de Carabanzo (Cat-3), the bunch following the day's original break -an eight-man group including the Movistar Team's Jorge Arcas- was led by the race convoy through the same road they were taking in the previous two ascents – instead of the Santa Cruz road they were covering on the downhill, which was proposed as the final climb of the day.

The detour forced the group to lose precious seconds to get back on the right way. Solo leader Weimar Roldán (MED) ended up winning the stage, with 22" over Raúl Alarcón (W52) and 27" on a fifteen-rider group led home by Carlos Barbero, finishing 3rd in the day of his 26th birthday. The elite field also included Nairo Quintana (14th), who went on the attack into that final climb and was later reeled back by the main field. The Vuelta a Asturias will suffer a major shake-up in its GC standings, maybe a decisive one, on Sunday as 177km take the riders from Soto de Ribera to the Alto del Acebo (Cat-1), via the ascents of La Espina (Cat-2) and Piedratecha (Cat-3).

Tour de Romandie: Herrada 5th overall before decisive TT

Two names overshadowed the rest at the Queen stage of the Tour de Romandie -164km with four categorized climbs from Domdidier to Leysin (Cat-1)-. Simon Yates (ORS) won the closing sprint and took over the GC lead ahead of Richie Porte (BMC) after their moves caught the other leaders out of balance: the Briton jumped away at the descent of the Col du Pillon (Cat-1), leaving the SKY / BMC-led bunch behind, while the Tasmanian dropped all favourites with strong attacks in the decisive climb and reached down the solo leader, finishing 2nd.

Almost one minute behind, a big group of contenders included Jesús Herrada (19th), Andrey Amador (20th) and late strugglers Castroviejo, Carapaz and Anacona, few meters behind. Herrada now seats in 5th overall –52" behind Yates; 8" after Felline (TFS, 4th); 14" behind Buchmann (BOH), now 3rd-, and will fight tomorrow to improve his ninth spot from 2014. Castroviejo, in turn, will start Sunday's demanding 18km ITT in Lausanne 17" away from the race's top-ten.

TT start times (local): 12.38h Dowsett, 13.30h Betancur, 13.39h Amador, 13.42h Fernández, 13.45h Carapaz, 13.51h Anacona, 14.01h Castroviejo, 14.37h Herrada.


Picture: Photo Gomez Sport