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The Daily Race: Vuelta a España Stage 15

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Vuelta a España Podium Cafe

Stage 15: Solares — Lagos de Covadonga

What is it? Flat, flat, flat, mountain top finish!
Got Climbs? Just one, and it's the stage finale.
Red Jersey Battle: So on.
Ideal Rider: Why a climber, of course! Xavier Tondo. (Sorry Carlos.)
@Gavia: This stage feels like the Giro. Except it's September, and we're in Spain. Exactly the same, really.

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Lagos de Covadonga

The stage departs Solares and runs flat along the coast for the first 150 kilometers of racing. At Ribadesella, the course turns inland, but it's still another 30 kilometers of flat racing to the final climb. This stage is all about the climb to Lagos de Covadonga. Do peruse the profile. That bad boy goes uphill for 12.5 kilometers. The gradient bounces around, but there is quite a bit of the nasties. I do like a little 11% gradient in the morning, don't you? The max hits 15% and arrives just outside 2 kilometers to go. Under the red kite, there's actually a brief descent, then it's 7.5% to the line. It's a climbers' party, the sprinters can cry if they want to. If the time gaps aren't big enough for you at the end of the day, don't be sad. There's another mountain stage coming up next.

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Carlos Barredo Wins! Barredo wins the stage, while Vincenzo Nibali holds Red.

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