It was a chiaroscuro day that Ineos saw today in the third stage of the Vuelta a España 2021. At the height of Picon Blanco, despite the fact that very little happened among the big names, due to headwinds, Richard Carapaz went into a crisis. The Olympian gave exactly one minute to the former red jersey group Primoz Roglic. The gap, in and of itself, is not very significant, but the impression is that the Ecuadorean is already starting to get tired of the Tour and the Olympics.
If the Karabaz crisis was not a temporary one, but an empty corridor a harbinger of a deterioration in the situation, then the Ecudorian situation would become complicated. With today’s match, in fact, it is clear that Richard cannot arrange the standings, and at the same time, he cannot even be very helpful to the team’s cause. Ineos hopes, then, that the Olympic’s day will be bad, perhaps due to the heat, and that Richard will find in the following stages a good pedal stroke.
For the pain-ridden Karabaz, there’s Adam Yates who seems to be doing really well. The Briton was among the few who tried to attack Picon Blanco and visually gave the idea of having an excellent leg. It wasn’t obvious to see him that much fun, after the counter performance of Team Vuelta a Burgos. However, the Bury native is already 51 behind Primoz Roglic in the general classification and is called up to separate the Slovenian on the next high mountain fractures, because the Jumbo-Visma captain, at the end of the Vuelta, will have time trial on his part. 33 kilometers to make a difference.
Bernal’s performance was without shame and without praise. The Giro winner arrived with Roglic’s group, but seemed to be among the most struggling. It is true that, from a purely stylistic point of view, he has a less beautiful stature on the saddle than those of the others, which makes him look like he’s having a hard time even when he’s actually doing well. However, already in Vuelta, Burgos Bernal was nothing short of amazing, and the short and difficult climbs of Vuelta are less suitable for him than those he faced at Corsa Rosa.
Photo: La Presse
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