- - Vuelta a España 2023 Stage 6

Vuelta a España 2023 Stage 6

photo credits @ La Vuelta

Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) claimed a solo victory in stage 6 of the Vuelta a España today, commencing his winning move with just over 3 kilometers remaining as he tackled the menacing climb to Observatorio Astrofísico de Javalambre.

Meanwhile, Lenny Martinez (Groupama-FDJ) outsprinted Romain Bardet (Team dsm-firmenich) across the mountaintop finish to finalize the podium, completely disrupting the GC standings.

The front trio were part of a large breakaway group that split the peloton halfway through the race, with Martinez vaulting from the virtual lead on the relentless day of climbing to take the overall race lead.

“It was an incredibly hard stage. We wanted to go away in the breakaway and just to test QuickStep. We knew it would be a hard day to control. That was the primary objective,” Kuss said at the finish

“The whole day I felt super, super good. I was only thinking about when to go, and when to try to make the difference. The whole climb I was just enjoying the environment we have in the Vuelta, it’s always a special race for me.” “For me, to win a stage is just incredible. I’m in the general [classification] now, so one day at a time.”

In the meantime, Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-QuickStep) succumbed to the firepower of Jumbo-Visma and finished 3:24 behind the new leader of the race, relegating him to a paltry ninth overall.

Indeed, the first chink in the armor of the Belgian rider came on the final climb, when Kuss launched his attack at the front of the race thanks to a huge acceleration orchestrated by Roglič, leaving Evenepoel unable to match the pace.

Race Highlights

It took 70 kilometers of racing before a huge breakaway group of 42 riders containing the likes of Michael Storer (Groupama-FDJ), Lenny Martinez (Groupama-FDJ), Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates), Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma), Steff Cras (Total Energies), Wout Poels (Bahrain Victorious), Jefferson Cepeda (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA), David De La Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan), Rémy Rochas (Cofidis), Juanpe Lopez (Lidl-Trek), Mikel Landa (Bahrain Victorious), Hugh Carthy (EF Education-EasyPost), Attila Valter (Jumbo-Visma) and Andreas Kron (Lotto Dstny) managed to escape the peloton.

From there, the group’s advantage swelled to 7 minutes, before being halved at the foot of the climb to the Observatorio Astrofisico de Javalambre, with Storer setting the pace at the front for Martinez.

However, Einer Rubio (Movistar) decided to attack with 4 kilometers to go, a move that was quickly marked by Bardet and Martinez. But, Kuss was the most effective, later distancing his rivals with 3.3 kilometers to go.

It was on the victory for the American rider from there, summiting the climb with a 26-second gap over of Martinez and Bardet.

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