Stage 7 | Maceda to Puebla de Sanabria | Vuelta a España 2016
Friday’s seventh stage of the Vuelta a España was won by Belgium’s Jonas Van Genechten but the final kilometre was marred by another crash involving one of the favourites, this time Alberto Contador.
Contador crossed the line looking bloodied and seemed pessimistic about his chances before Saturday’s crucial stage to Valle de Sabero. It was more bad luck for the Spaniard, who crashed twice at the Tour de France before abandoning.
Richard Moore joins Daniel Friebe and François Thomazeau in Spain for the nightly podcast and they discuss whether Contador is indeed merely the victim of misfortune, or if his crashes are a sign that his powers are waning and age is catching up with him.
François gives us the lowdown on the French riders and we hear from Simon Clarke, the Australian on the Cannondale-Drapac team, who escaped in the closing kilometres with Luis Leon Sanchez, only to be caught in the final 100 metres.
There’s also an interview with Sir Dave Brailsford, who reflects on a day of mixed fortunes. While it was another incident-free stage for Chris Froome, the Team Sky leader, the British squad lost Michal Kwiatkowski, the former world champion, who withdrew with back pain.
Brailsford admits to disappointment at the loss of Kwiatkowski but is bullish at Froome’s prospects. Froome, he says, “has been very pleasantly surprised by the way he’s felt on the bike, the way he’s climbed and the way he’s performed so far.”
Brailsford added: “He wants it, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. At the start of the season we looked at the combination of Tour, Rio and Vuelta as three goals together. He’s won the Tour, he’s got a medal in Rio, and here he is embarking on some of the decisive stages of the Vuelta.”
The Telegraph Cycling Podcast is supported by Rapha and Eurosport