Vuelta a España dilemma

CHRIS FROOME: The time trial is critical.

THE organisers of the Vuelta a España were forced to debate whether or not to change the race’s route in light of the horrendous fires which have laid waste to Javea and Benitatxell. 

The 19th stage of the tour, one of the world’s biggest cycling events, has an individual time trial scheduled for September 9 on the 37km stretch between Javea and Calpe. 

At the time of writing the tour’s director in Spain, Javier Guillen, was hesitant to make any statements, preferring to wait on the outcome of continuing firefighting efforts in Bolulla, which could also endanger the 20th stage finish in Aitana.  

The northern Costa Blanca run is the penultimate and one of the crucial stages of the Vuelta a Espana before the race reaches its hotly anticipated climax in Madrid on September 11.

The Calpe time trial is absolutely critical to British rider Chris Froome’s ambitions as he finished stage 16 three minutes behind race leader Nairo Quintana. 

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