09 September 2012
The twentieth and decisive stage of the Vuelta today. All the main contenders on another cripplingly hard day performed (reasonably) as expected. Maybe Rodriguez and Valverde should have attacked earlier - but who can blame anyone on those gradients at the finish. But Contador finished well adrift. Enough to stay in pole position for the overall win, but where was the superhuman elan he produced two stages ago? I remain conviced that his erratic performance reflects the selective use of chemical assistance. Time will tell.