Stage 16: Pravia to Alto de La Cubilla. Lena , 144.4km
Fuglsang hits the high notes with solo mountain top win
Jacob Fuglsang gave Astana its second stage win with a solo effort on the 1700m Alto de La Cubilla.
Fuglsang was part of the 21-man break that managed to get away after more than 50km of hard racing. Proving a strong return to form after a disappointing early summer campaign he dropped all his companions on the Alto de la Cubilla, a climb making its Vuelta debut, to claim the solo win 22″ ahead of Tao Geoghegan Hart (Team Ineos), with teammate Luis León Sánchez taking third at 40″, just ahead of James Knox (Deceuninck – Quick Step).
Astana leader Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team) lying fourth on GC also went on the attack attempting to close in on third placed Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) but while both Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) and Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) lost time both Pogačar and race leader Primoz Roglic held firm.
Fuglsang explained how much the stage meant, “It feels great. To win a stage was one of my goals coming here as well as helping the team and building my shape for the last part of the season. But one thing is to have a goal, another thing is to achieve it. I’m super happy with this win. From the morning the plan was to have me and Luis [Leon Sanchez] at the front, to go in the hunt for the stage victory. With two guys in the breakaway, we could try to win the stage and if it didn’t work out, we had people up the road to help Miguel [Angel Lopez] in the final climb. And the plan worked out. It’s been my best season ever. I am super happy that I can continue to show it was not a good spring; that I had consistency to come back after a setback in the Tour de France. To win my first Grand Tour stage is really special.”
Stage 16 Results and GC