By Graham Jones
and Barry Boyce

CyclingRevealed Historian



Also read:

La Vuelta: A Colorful
& Caliente History

Vuelta a Espana Champions
Living and Dead









Vuelta Picture Recap - Anticipation and Trepidation

Stage 1, August 26th, Malaga to Malaga TTT, 7.3 km

Power Struggle

Málaga is the capital of the Costa del Sol which is one of the principal Mediterranean playgrounds of Europe. The spectacle of Pro Tour teams screeching at full speed along the road parallel to the sea will no doubt amaze many sun seeking holiday makers. Even to hardened race followers this is going to be an extremely unusual event. Dead flat and not technical, this will be a test of pure power. GC time will be counted for each team by the fifth rider to cross the line.


A beautiful evening greeted the riders with 25 degrees and very little wind. With such a short course it was clear that the time gaps would be small. Some teams were clocked riding in excess of 60kph and at these speeds the slightest error of judgment could cause a spill. At the first roundabout shortly after the start Gerolsteiners David Rebellin slid out. With nine teams in, Caisse-D'Epargne-Illes Balears took the lead by one second from Team-Milram and two seconds from Discovery. However a very impressive looking CSC, chocked full of powerful TT riders, was awaiting their turn and the smart money was on these specialists. They blitzed in to the finish a massive seven seconds faster than Caisse-D'Epargne-Illes Balears. Up to this point most team finish times were separated by just one or two seconds. Having put Carlos Sastre up front at the finish line he has become the first race leader. CSC has thrown down the gauntlet already and Vuelta GC favorite Sastre has started the serious power struggle that will last until Madrid.


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Vuelta a Espana 06
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