- - Vuelta a España 2023 Stage 21

Vuelta a España 2023 Stage 21

photo credits @ La Vuelta

Kaden Groves (Alpecin-Deceuninck) won the final stage of Vuelta a España in Madrid today, after the Australian rider held-off Filippo Ganna (Ineos Grenadiers) on the line to secure the overall green jersey.  

Meanwhile, Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) turned the formality of completing the last stage into reality as the USA’s second-ever overall winner of the Spanish Grand Tour. Jumbo-Visma swept the GC podium, with Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard second and Giro d’Italia champion Primož Roglič in third.

Race Highlights

The final stage ended up producing a frantic battle between the peloton and the breakaway. As the bunch made contact inside the final kilometer, Remco Evenepoel launched an attack – all but forcing Groves into action and serving as an immaculate lead-out for the green jersey who sprinted to his third stage victory of this year’s race, and what will surely be the most satisfying of the set.

Starting out at Madrid’s celebrated Hipódromo de la Zarzuela racecourse, the standard processional part of the final stage was over far more quickly than normal. After the four jersey wearers, and Jumbo Visma as a team, had completed their curtain calls, the peloton pressed on for the city center circuit.

The 5km course was shaped into three prongs, featuring long straights and tight hairpins that would bring riders all but to a standstill as they completed each corner. 

With 44km of the stage remaining, the Bora-hansgrohe duo of Nico Denz and Lennard Kamna escaped the bunch, taking Ruis Costa (Intermarche-Circus-Wanty) along with them.  

From there, the trio was allowed to open up a gap of around 20-seconds, before the sprint teams tightened their grip on the race, setting things up for a grandstand finale.

Heading the final kilometer, the leaders were still clinging to a 10-second gap, but the curtains were brought down on them with 500 meters to go. 

Evenepoel led into the final corner, but Groves still had enough left in his legs that he could use the Belgian as his lead out.

With 175 meters left, Groves launch his sprint. Ganna fought hard, but had to settle for another second place, with Denz rounding out the top three.

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