The 19th stage of the Vuelta a España ended with an expected bunch sprint. Team Jumbo-Visma and Sepp Kuss stayed out of trouble throughout the day and are in an excellent position for the final two stages of the Spanish cycling race.
Italian sprinter Alberto Dainese of Team dsm-firmenich won the stage to Isca.
Kuss finished 52nd on the day in the same time as Dainese to hold on to his 17-second overall lead.
“Getting here safely was the most important thing today,” sports director Marc Reef said, noting there was a crash in the peloton in the final kilometers. “We wanted to stay out of trouble and ride towards the safety zone at the front of the peloton. Accidents happen. It's important to stay sharp and alert on stages like this. We got through today's stage with a good feeling. We are one day closer to our big goal. On to tomorrow's stage.”
“It's never as easy as it seems,” Kuss said. “Luckily, we all escaped trouble and made it to the finish in one piece. This brings us another day closer to our goal. Tomorrow's stage is a bit like a classic. It will be a tough day with a high pace all day. We have to be on our guard again tomorrow.”
The penultimate stage of the Vuelta contains a fair amount of climbing.
“It's the stage with the most meters of climbing in this Vuelta,” Reef said. “It won't be easy to control this stage. It goes up and down all day long. There are no very steep climbs. So the pace will be high. A lot of teams will be going for all or nothing. We are all healthy and ready for the final battle of this intense Vuelta.”