Stage 9 of Vuelta a España saw Lennard Kamna win his first Grand Tour victory
Posted : 04 September 2023
Stage 9 of the Vuelta a España delivered another day of surprises as challenging road conditions led to a unique finish. While the final 2.05km of the race went uncontested in the general classification battle, the stage still concluded atop a demanding climb, where Lennard Kamna secured his first-ever victory at the Spanish Grand Tour.
Kamna, riding for Bora-hansgrohe, completed his Grand Tour stage hat-trick, having previously won stages at the Tour de France in 2020 and the Giro d'Italia in 2022. The stage was affected by weather conditions, prompting organizers to take timings from 2.05km before the end.
In the general classification, Primoz Roglic of Jumbo-Visma was believed to have gained a few seconds on his rivals at a different "finish" line, but the main favorites for the red jersey eventually reached the summit without contention.
The complex changes in the stage's route meant that GC timings were not available until later, confirming that Roglic had taken back two seconds on Remco Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step). Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) retained the leader's red jersey despite losing nine seconds to his teammate Roglic.
The race also witnessed challenging weather conditions as strong winds blew across the course, leading to the formation of echelons in the peloton. Jumbo-Visma took advantage of these conditions, splitting the bunch into groups. Only a select few riders managed to stay in the front group, including Evenepoel, Mattia Cattaneo, and several Bora-Hansgrohe riders, among others.
The first part of the race saw an aggressive pace, with 52km covered in the opening hour. As the breakaway formed, it consisted of riders who were not a threat in the overall standings, allowing them to extend their lead to over eight minutes.
However, crosswinds began to affect the race again, causing splits in the peloton and reducing the breakaway's lead by half in just 20km. Eventually, the two halves of the peloton merged, allowing a more controlled pace to return, and the breakaway's lead expanded once more.