Warren Barguil claims a slice of the 2013 Vuelta

When he won the other day Warren Barguil was just some rider who I hadn’t really heard of. When he won again today, it seemed more meaningful. Now he was ‘that bloke who won the other day’.

It was a cracking win too. The bit that impressed me wasn’t when he opened a lead on everyone with a few kilometres to go; it was what happened after he’d been caught by Rigoberto Uran. Being caught is dispiriting. It means the momentum is with the other guy. If you couldn’t hold him off, he must be stronger than you.

Despite this, Barguil upped his effort and stuck with Uran. Then, at the finish, he forced all 12 grams of body weight through those pedals and nicked the sprint by the width of one of the rashers of bacon he so loves to avoid eating. Chapeau!

The general classification

Vince Nibbles is mortal! And a bit surly!

Nibali’s post-stage interview was faintly sulky after the Shark of Messina lost 20-odd seconds to all of his rivals. He complained about Joaquim Rodriguez and Alejandro Valverde being so focused on him and told them to pay more attention to Chris Horner; he complained about all the travelling; and he complained about all the interviews he has to do as race leader.

Unlikely as it seemed yesterday, there may be a solution to that last one with a really tough week coming up after the rest day. Joaquim Rodriguez in particular appears to be picking up form late in a race, just as he did at the Tour. If they had six-week races, he’d win them all.

Rest day

Might do a Tour of Britain preview. Might not. Either way, it starts on Sunday.


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