News | Vuelta a Espana September 8, 2019

A resiliant ride from Pogačar keeps the young talent in white at La Vuelta

UAE Team Emirates’ Tadej Pogačar moved another step closer to taking a podium finish at his first ever Grand Tour, after matching his main GC and Youth Classification rival, Miguel Angel Lopez (Team Astana), pedal stroke for pedal stroke during stage 15 of La Vuelta.


It was a stage that saw the breakaway riders have their day, with Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) crossing the line first after battling 154.4kms of mountainous terrain from Tieno to Santuario del Acebo. The race came to life for the GC contenders on the final climb of the day, with a select group of riders fracturing as the gradients got tougher. Pogačar (photo Bettini) rode the perfect race, letting Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and Promoz Roglic (Jumbo Visma) ride away with 7km to go as they went head to head for first and second place. Meanwhile, Pogačar calmly marked his man Lopez, responding to each acceleration and ensuring no time gaps were opened up. The intelligent and measured performance allowed the 20-year-old Slovenian to retain third place in the overall classification – 17 seconds ahead of Lopez – and take the white ‘young riders’ jersey into stage 16.


Pogačar commented: “It was another really fast day and the start was really hard. Towards the end it was getting hotter and hotter and we still went full gas on the last climb, so I am really happy that I could hold third place in the overall and the white jersey.
When Valverde attacked, I was a little tired, but also I didn’t want to waste more energy by accelerating so early on the climb. Instead I decided it was best to follow Lopez as he is still the closest to me in the GC”.


Stage 16 will be another tough race for the GC riders as they take on a 144.4km mountain course from Pravia to Alto de la Cubilla Luba. The stage features three climbs en route and ends with yet another summit finish, 1690m above sea level.


Stage 15 results
1 Sepp Kuss (USA) Jumbo-Visma 4h19’04”
2 Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Katusha-Alpecin 39″
3 Tao Goeghegan Hart (Gbr) Team Ineos 40″
12 Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates 2’55”


General classification after stage 15
1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma 58h10’32”
2 Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar 2’25”
3 Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates 3’42”