The individual time trial of La Vuelta 23 saw Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers) power to his first ever victory in Spain as he got the best of the world champion Remco Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step) in Valladolid. The Italian star covered the 25.8km at an average of 56.0km/h, setting a time of 27’39’’. Evenepoel came 2nd (+16’’) and was the fastest of the GC contenders, 20 seconds ahead of Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma), while Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) lost a minute to the Belgian defending winner of La Vuelta. Riding with La Roja, Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) set the 13th best time and only lost 17’’ to Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates), his first chaser in the overall standings. Evenepoel moves up to the third position, with a gap of 1’09’’ to the American leader.
After the rest day, La Vuelta 23 returns to action with a key time trial (25.8km) to kick-off the second week of racing in Valladolid, a classic of the Spanish Grand Tour since it hosted the very first stage finish in 1935. Callum Scotson (Jayco AlUla) is the first rider to go, at 14:01, and Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) will be the last rider off the ramp, at 17:02, with La Roja on his shoulders.
Bissegger can’t resist Ganna
Clément Davy (Groupama-FDJ) sets the first reference of interest, with a time of 30’55’’. But the Frenchman can’t resist the European champion Stefan Bissegger (EF Education-EasyPost), faster at every intermediate point (km 12.5 and 19.5), who eventually clocks a time of 28’58’’. The Swiss rider impressed, but he confesses he “didn’t have the best day”.
Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers) starts his effort 44 minutes after Bissegger. And he quickly shows he’s off to a flying performance. A 2-time ITT World Champion (2020, 21), holder of the hour record and current national ITT champion, the Italian star leads by 33’’ at the first intermediate point, 52’’ at the second, and 1’18’’ on the line. He averaged 56.0km/h over the 25.8km!
Evenepoel accelerates, Kuss holds on
The GC battle gets going with a strong performance from Aleksandr Vlasov (Bora-Hansgrohe), the first rider to finish less than a minute behind Ganna (+52’’). Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates) finishes just ahead of Vlasov (+50’’) but Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) is not as fast. The Danish winner of the Tour de France concedes 1’18’’.
Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) and Remco Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step) trade seconds until the Belgian sets the 2nd best time on the line (+16’’), 20 seconds head of his Slovenian rival. Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) takes the 13th best time and only loses 17’’ to Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates). The American climber still leads the overall standings ahead of another GC battle on Wednesday.