Stage 17 of the Vuelta a España saw a return of the legendary Altu de L’Angliru, one of cycling’s most famous climbs, and provided the penultimate mountain test for Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) to try and navigate in the hopes of winning his first Grand Tour.
It was a brutal day of racing up the Vuelta’s most famous climb and Chris Auld was there for Cyclingnews to capture the day’s action. This special feature is a selection of his images from a dramatic stage in the Asturias region.
Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-SuickStep) kicked off the action right from the flag and the defending champion would get far into the day’s route, aided by Mattia Cattaneo and only caught in the final 6km of the final climb.
Once Evenepoel was reeled in, the attention turned to Jumbo-Visma’s trio of Kuss, Primož Roglič and Jonas Vingegaard, with the question of whether or not the latter two would attack Kuss’ lead still unanswered.
The three would find themselves alone after Bahrain Victorious had worked tirelessly to move Mikel Landa up to fifth overall and Kuss would start to struggle first, relaying something to the team radio as he could no longer match the pace and watching his teammates disappear into the mist.
Roglič won the stage with Vingegaard in his wheel, but Kuss held onto the red jersey, albeit only just, and he entered today’s final mountain stage just 8 seconds ahead of Vingegaard.
With no threat of anyone behind challenging any of their podium spots, will Vingegaard and Roglič let their loyal super-domestique achieve the ultimate Grand Tour success? Or will they attack Kuss in pursuit of their own glory?