Stage 3 effectively was a climber’s paradise with a daunting 9.3% incline for over 7 km at the end of the race. Some might say it is too early in the Vuelta for such a first category climb but if I was a rider I would be happy it came in this part of the Tour. I am still fresh and have some energy to spare I would say let’s go. Rein Taaramae of Estonia(his first victory in over 10 years) with the stage victory from the breakaway to upset a field of good climbers that included Richard Carapaz , second was Joe Dombrowski of the USA who had a strong finish. With that victory Taaramae takes over the overall lead from Primoz Roglic with Kenny Elissonde second 25 seconds behind him with Roglic a further 30 seconds behind. How do you prepare for a MAJOR CLIB like this one in Picon Blanco. One, always know your maximum sit and stand speed, a matter of your own preference. Some find it easier to gain speed seated on the saddle than others, others the opposite. In terms of aerodynamics, seating is more optimum than standing on a climb.

The bike you use should be a purpose built mountain bike, ONE THAT ALLOWS YOU TO SHIFT GEARS EASILY. It should be a bike which is light as well with a triple chainring. A rider should focus on the cardiovascular workout before the race and well as monitoring your weight. Cardiovascular workouts help with the essential breathing which most riders struggle with, the more weight you put the more effort on the paddle you need to make to push it up the incline. Lastly the most steepest part of the climb is not the most important, rather it is when it is now flattening up. That is when you are most complacent and tempted to ease up on the paddle to take a breather. You need to keep the momentum there taking advantage of the weaker climbers who would be knackered.