One day separates us from the end of the cycling season.
Heavy rain, wet roads, fog and La Covatilla – none of these could stop the relentless Rémi Cavagna from going again in the breakaway, less than twenty-four hours after lighting up stage 16 and being caught just two kilometers from the finish. This time, the Clermont-Ferrand native – elected most aggressive ride on Friday – took off together with a huge group numbering almost three dozen riders and was again prominent, his solid pulls at the front helping the escapees nudge out their advantage to four minutes.
Despite the relentless up-and-down parcours that played into its favour, the bunch couldn’t nullify the break, just catch some of the riders, including Rémi, on whom the sparkling effort he had put in since the start of the race was beginning to take its toll. David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) surged to victory on Alto de la Covatilla, while the general classification remained unchanged in its upper echelon.
Mattia Cattaneo was another Deceuninck – Quick-Step rider to stand out Saturday afternoon on the final climb of La Vuelta. Showing the same remarkable consistency and capacity of pushing his limits that almost netted him a maiden Grand Tour stage victory a few days ago, the Italian delivered another composed ride and held onto his place in the overall classification top 20, which puts him on the verge of his best ever Grand Tour finish.
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