Vuelta a España - Astorga - La Farrapona

Live Comments

  1. 16:45 - Wiggins retains his race lead, seven seconds ahead of second-place Froome. Bauke Mollema is now third, 36 seconds down, while Cobo rises to fourth, at 55. Fuglsang and Kessiakoff have both dropped to 5th and 6th, at 58 and 1:23 respectively. But the big loser today was Vincenzo Nibali - the defending champion was just four seconds down this morning, but he's now 1:25 down in seventh.

  2. 0km - Nibali and Rodriguez cross the line 2:05 down on the winner, Taaramae. Is that the end of the defending champion's chances?

  3. 0km - Wiggins and Froome cross the line 50 seconds down - superb by the British pair, who will gain time on all their rivals today.

  4. 0km - Rein Taaramae takes the win for Cofidis. Juan Jose Cobo crosses the line 25 seconds down, followed by his Geox team-mate De la Fuente.

  5. 0.2km - Taaramae has 20-odd seconds and knows he's going to win...

  6. 0.5km - It looks like the Estonian will hold on for the win today... Wiggins is grimacing in pain, but continues regardless. Cobo has dropped de le Fuente, but it's going to be too late.

  7. 1km - Taaramae has 23 seconds to play with under the one-to-go banner. The chasing group are another 30 seconds back.

  8. 1.1km - Moreno is dropped by the Wiggins group. What a ride from the Sky pair.

  9. 1.2km - Taaramae has 20 seconds on the Geox pair. Froome still sets the pace ahead of red jersey Wiggins.

  10. 1.5km - Taaramae has dropped De le Fuente, who seems to be waiting up for his Geox team-mate Cobo. Can the Estonian get the win today?

  11. 2km - It's Sky's Froome and Wiggins who are setting the pace - they are the ones doing the damage. Excellent riding from the red jersey.

  12. 2.5km - Nibali has been dropped! The defending champion cannot keep up and is spat out the back. And so too is Rodriguez!

  13. 3km - Cobo 45 seconds down on the leaders. He's going well and has 19 seconds on the chasing group.

  14. 3km - Cobo has passed Moreno and has forced the pack to react. Further up, the leaders pass the 3-to-go banner. Taaramae moves forward ahead of De la Fuente - he hasn't done that for a bit.

  15. 3.5km - Another attack from Daniel Moreno! The Katusha man has a second stab, and he's chased down by Juan Jose Cobo of Geox. That's an interesting move - Cobo is only 1:27 down in the GC.

  16. 4km - This is a good move from Txurruka, who passes an orange flag and an Euskaltel fan on a right bend. Further up, it's De le Fuente who sets the pace ahead of Taaramae. Eurosport commentator thinks that they won't stay out in front...

  17. 5km - The two leaders pass the 5km-to-go banner. Txurruka is next over, 58 seconds down. The peloton then passes at 1:12.

  18. 5.5km - Euskaltel's Amets Txurruka launches an attack from the peloton.

  19. 6km - The Moreno-Bruseghin chasing group has been caught by the red jersey group. Wiggins is still there, but he's grimacing somewhat. His work done, Verdugo drops back.

  20. 7km - Bruseghin leads Moreno and the others under the 7km-to-go banner around 50 seconds behind the leading duo. But they have just 12 seconds on the pack, which is still being led by Euskaltel's Gorka Verdugo.

  21. 8km - The Wiggins group is closing in on Moreno's group - just 30 seconds now.

  22. 9km - The two leaders pass the 10-to-go banner and the sun has come back out.

  23. 10km - They're onto a short downhill segment on this climb ahead of the final slog up to the finish. The road is really lovely - but no surprise, given that this climb is being used for the first time in Vuelta history.

  24. 10km - Wiggins is not near the front of the main group, preferring to ride alongside Cobo, Kessiakoff and Rodriguez rather than check Nibali, who is on the front.

  25. 11km - Still Bruseghin grinds out the pace on the front ahead of Moreno. They're within a minute of the leading duo now. Righi drops off the back of the chasing group, who have just five now.

  26. 12km - Verdugo is back on the front, but he's setting a fast pace, with a couple of Liquigas riders in his wheel. Some sufferers are already falling off the back.

  27. 13km - Gorka Verdugo of Euskaltel rides off the front of the red jersey group, which we can't really call a pack or bunch now.

  28. 14km - The Moreno group is 1:05 down on the leaders and 55 seconds ahead of the pack.

  29. 15km - The two leaders are onto a freshly tarmac-ed strip of road - it's a lovely smooth surface, albeit very black.

  30. 15km - Moreno is refusing to work in the group, and Bruseghin is forced to do all the pace setting. Rabobank have three on the front of the chasing peloton, including Luis Leon Sanchez, who was in that initial break but has been swept up since. The bunch is 2:05 down on the leading duo.

  31. 16km - One of the Movistar riders has already been dropped from the Moreno group. It's Intxausti, who's exhausted. There are six left in this group now: Moreno, Vorganov, Bruseghin, Righi, Mondory and Bonnafond.

  32. 17km - The two leaders have 1:13 over the Moreno group, who are 48 ahead of the red jersey chasing group.

  33. 18km - The Moreno group has caught a whole cluster of other riders who were originally in that early break, so we have a new chasing group of around 10 riders in pursuit of the two leaders. We're approaching the final climb of the day, the HC climb to La Farrapona, which has an average gradient of six percent, but some very steep ramps towards the end.

  34. 20km - Second intermediate sprint: 1. De la Fuenta (Geox), 2. Taaramae (Cofidis). The leaders have 1:35 over the chasing five riders, with the peloton another 45 seconds back.

  35. 21km - In fact, it's Lampre's Righi who is caught by the quartet. Not too much longer left in this descent now - then it's the second intermediate sprint and the final climb to the summit finish.

  36. 23km - The Moreno quartet clearly have some more of the remaining escapees in front of them, because we can see some lone riders up ahead on this descent. It's the red or the orange of Cofidis or Euskaltel - probably Yoann Bagot.

  37. 25km - So, we have a Katusha double (Moreno and Vorganov) and a Movistar double (Intxausti and Bruseghin) in pursuit of the leading pair (Taaramae and De le Fuente). They have 2:09 over the Moreno group, with the peloton just 30 seconds further back.

  38. 27km - It will be interesting to see if Nibali puts in a dig on this descent... He's on the front, but he's not really going for it yet.

  39. 29km - Moreno catches the Movistar pair of Bruseghin and Intxausti, who it seems still had Katusha's Vorganov out in front, because now they're riding as a four.

  40. 30km - Taaramae is leading De la Fuente down the descent. The Geox rider is not comfortable in these fast downhills. The peloton are in pursuit - they have crossed the summit now.

  41. 32km - Daniel Moreno (Katusha) crosses the summit, 2:21 down on the two leaders. Movistar pair Bruseghin and Intxausti still up ahead between Moreno and the leading duo.

  42. 33km - Rodriguez has another dig - and Geox pair Cobo and Menchov have it covered. Wiggins is holding on - just. He has no team-mates any more.

  43. 33km - Summit of the Cat.1 San Lorenzo pass: 1. Taaramae (Cofidis), 2. De le Fuente (Geox).

  44. 34km - RadioShack's Janez Brajkovic has caught the main group - he must have been distanced after that RadioShack incident. Further up, Moreno and Kuchynski are catching up with the remnants of the initial break.

  45. 34km - Cancellara has dropped back, his work done. Fuglsang leads the main group, with Coco in his wheel. Nibali is there too and Van den Broeck. But Wiggins taking a back seat at the moment. Further up, Moreno catches Leigh Howard and then catches his team-mate Aliaksandr Kuchynski.

  46. 34km - RadioShack's Haimer Zubeldia, 10th this morning, has been dropped and rides in a group one minute back. Perhaps he was affected in that crash which stopped so many RadioShack riders on the last descent?

  47. 35km - Moreno was in yesterday's break and took back some valuable lost time. He's just 1:52 down in the GC so he's quite a dangerous package. The Spaniard has opened up a gap. And now there's wnother dig from Katusha - this time it's Joaquim Rodriguez! But it's just a test, and he's pegged back.

  48. 35km - ATTACK: Katusha's Daniel Moreno, wearing the combined white jersey, takes everyone by surprise with an injection of pace. No reaction from the Leopard train on the front.

  49. 35km - Red jersey Bradley Wiggins is in the main chasing group. He has Sky team-mate Chris Froome by his side.

  50. 36km - Swiss powerhouse Fabian Cancellara is setting the pace on the front of the bunch for Leopard's man Jakob Fuglsang. It's safe to say that Spartacus won't be there once the road hits the 11 percent section.

  51. 36km - Taaramae and De la Fuente are still together, 3:22 ahead of the bunch. They're onto the really steep part of the climb now. 3km till the summit.

  52. 37km - The bus has formed off ther back of the bunch - it's a picture of pain.

  53. 38km - Intxausti and Bruseghin have about 30 seconds on the peloton, but are 2:35 down on the break. De La Fuente has joined Taaramae off the front.

  54. 38km - ATTACK: Rein Taaramae (Cofidis) makes the first move from the bunch. He has David de la Fuente (Geox) in pursuit as well as Francesco Bellotti (Liquigas).

  55. 38km - Karsten Kroon has abandoned the race after that earlier crash.

  56. 39km - The five riders look like they're being reeled back in, just as Movistar go on the offensive. They have two riders pulling away now, Marzo Bruseghin and Benat Intxausti.

  57. 40km - Alberto Losada, one of six Katusha riders on the front of the peloton, launches an attack, prompting a reply from a handful of riders, including French champion Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step).

  58. 41km - HTC's Leigh Howard has already been dropped on this demanding climb as Yoann Bagot (Cofidis) sets a fast pace.

  59. 41km - In the breakaway group, Lampre's Daniele Righi has a cut on his right forearm so perhaps the Italian was involved in that earlier crash - but without falling down into the ravine.

  60. 42km - Katusha still drive the peloton as they approach the bottom fo the descent. Movistar's Pablo Lastras is on the front as well. The leaders are now onto the Cat.1 San Lorenzo pass - 10km long at an average gradient of 8.5 percent. The last 5km averages out at 11 percent, so this is a real leg-killer.

  61. 44km - Coming into the town of San Martin, the leading group is now down to 15 riders following those crashes. The gap is just 3:50 now.

  62. 47km - Vanmarcke is not the only one - it seems BMC's Karsten Kroon is also involved in this crash. They must have both gone over the barriers and down a steep slope covered in trees, bushes and rocks. Kroon has a rip to his shorts, but like Vanmarcke, seems ok.

  63. 48km - CRASH: A Garmin rider is right down a ravine and climbing up through the bushes with the help of various spectators. He's grimacning a bit, and holding his hip, but he doesn't seem to have any cuts on him. It's Sep Vanmarcke from the leading group.

  64. 50km - The gap drops under the five minute mark. This is a very long descent.

  65. 54km - Euskaltel's Jorge Aranza avoids crashing over a barrier on the descent in the leading group. It looks like his chain drops and the Spaniard has to unclip and get off the bike to avoid a fall. He's back on his way now.

  66. 55km - Katusha still on the front of the bunch for this fast descent. And there's been a crash from a RadioShack rider! Four of the US-based team are waiting beside the road, so perhaps something happened to Janez Brajkovic.

  67. 58km - This is a 21km descent and so some gaps could easily form ahead of the Cat.1 San Lorenzo pass.

  68. 60km - A Vacansoleil rider comes to the front of the bunch ahead of Katusha. They cross the summit 5:29 down on the leaders.

  69. 62km - This is quite a narrow, twisting descent - and the road surface leaves a lot to be desired. They're going to have to take it carefully. Nibali will like this one when the peloton has it's turn.

  70. 64km - Rein Taaramae is driving the pace in the leading group as they approach the summit right up in the misty clouds. The sprint for the mountain points is uncontested. order over the top: 1. De la Fuente (Geox), 2. Bagot (Cofidis), 3. Howard (HTC).

  71. 65km - Red jersey Bradley Wiggins is riding in the wheels of Katusha pair Joaquim Rodriguez and Daniel Moreno. It's pretty much Katusha on the front of the peloton, with Katusha's Eduard Vorganov sitting right on the back of the group. The gap is now seven minutes.

  72. 67km - It's the quiet before the storm at the moment, with the bunch still as one on the first test of the day, 7:15 down on the leading group of 17 riders. One Belgian newspaper said this morning that the Vuelta starts today and finishes tomorrow - and that could be the case.

  73. 70km - The 17 leaders were more than eight minutes ahead but now, as the road heads up, their lead has been slashed to about 7:30.

  74. 75km - The leading group is approaching the first climb of the day, the Cat.2 Puerto de la Ventana.

  75. 80km - The big questions today are who is going to attack and when. Nibali has been taking seconds back on Wiggins piecemeal since the ITT, but today's testing climbs could see the Italian finally lay down the hammer. As for Rodriguez, he's quite down in the GC after losing time in the first big summit finish last week at La Covatilla, then the ITT. He said this morning that it was not impossible for him to return near the top of the GC with two solid days in the mountains.

  76. 85km - Katusha and Sky control the pace of the peloton. The race is LIVE NOW on British Eurosport 2 and is also available on your PC via the Eurosport Player: click here to subscribe

  77. 90km - The temperature is around 22 degrees and the sun is out today, albeit in a slightly cloudy sky.

  78. 95km - The leaders go through the feeding zone. The second hour of racing was at an average speed of 44.1 km/h. The lead is 7:35.

  79. 100km - Result of the first intermediate sprint: 1. Lloyd Mondory (AG2R), 3. Guillaume Bonnafond (AG2R), 3. Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank). Spain's Joaquim Rodriguez, who has won two stages in this year's race, is currently leading the green jersey competition by six points ahead of Peter Sagan (Liquigas), who also has two wins to his name.

  80. 110km - The lead continues to grow - it's 7:12 at the latest check.

  81. 120km - The final climb of La Farrapona is being used for the first time in the Vuelta. It's 17km long with an average gradient of six percent. Spaniard Carlos Barredo (Rabobank) told reporters this morning: "It's a big climb like the climbs they use in the Tour de France. The last six kilometres are really difficult - there's nowhere to take a breather."

  82. 125km - In a race where the top four riders are separated by just nine seconds, it's probably fair to say that every second counts in this year's Vuelta. Which is precisely why defending champion Vincenzo Nibali used his trademark swift descending skills to nick the first intermediate sprint and, rather cheekily, the six bonus seconds that went with it at the start of a frantic stage 13. Blazin' Saddles: Vincenzo nibbles away

  83. 130km - The lead is up to 5:20 for the escapees.

  84. 135km - The average speed for the first hour of the race was a high 47.2 km/h. The 17-man break has 4:10 on the peloton as Sky start to come to the front to control things for red jersey Brad Wiggins.

  85. 140km - The leading group in full: Guillaume Bonnafond (AG2R), Luis Leon Sanchez (RAB), Eduard Vorganov (KAT), David de la Fuente (GEOX), Inaki Isasi (EUS), Lloyd Mondory (AG2R), Jorge Azana (EUS), Francesco Bellotti (LIQ), Rein Taaramae (COF), Yoann Bagot (COF), Karsten Kroon (BMC), Daniele Righi (LAM), Aliaksandr Kuchynski (KAT), Jonas Jorgensen (SAX), Jose Alberto Benitez (AND), Leigh Howard (HTC), Sep Vanmarcke (GAR).

  86. 145km - Today's stage builds gradually uphill until the first climb of the day, the Cat.2 Puerto de la Ventana. This is followed by the Cat.1 San Lorenzo pass before the final ascent of La Farrapona to the summit finish. With the top four riders split by just nine seconds, it's safe to say there will probably be a big shake up at the top today.

  87. 148km - Luis Leon Sanchez picks up a puncture but manages to get back with the leading group. Their advantage has grown to 3:07 over the bunch.

  88. 150km - Scarponi, runner-up of this year's Giro, is not the only big name rider to quit the race recently. Germany's Andreas Kloeden (RadioShack) tweeted this morning to explain he had left the race yesterday with back problems.

  89. 155km - Italy's Michele Scarponi (Lampre) has pulled out of the race. Scarponi has been on the slide ever since that first big mountain stage to La Covatilla, and yesterday he rolled in with the autobus more than 20 minutes down on stage winner Albasini. The 31-year-old decided not to sign in today.

  90. 158km - Two riders - Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) and Angel Madrazo (Movistar) - are trying to bridge the gap between the bunch and the leaders.

  91. 160km - The lead is up to 50 seconds despite the work being done by Movistar, Skil-Shimano and Quick Step back in the peloton. The best-placed rider in this group is Frenchman Guillaime Bonnafond (Ag2R) who is 12:44 down on Wiggins in the GC. Sky have bigger fish to fry - namely those three big climbs later in the stage - so they'll happily let this one go. Vuelta standings and results

  92. 165km - A chasing group formed, but was reeled in by QuickStep and Leopard-Trek working on the front of the peloton. The 17 leaders (who dropped Pablo Lastras of Movistar) have 38 seconds on the bunch.

  93. 170km - The break includes some interesting names, such as: Luis Leon Sanchez (Rababank), Rein Taaramae (Cofidis), David de la Fuente (Geox) and Alexandre Kuchynski (Katusha).

  94. 175km - Howard is joined by 18 riders who have formed a group off the front.

  95. 176km - They're off! And almost immediately we have a break attempt by HTC's Leigh Howard. The American-based team, which will fold at the end of the season, are clearly feeling buoyed following Michael Albasini's win yesterday. Report: Albasini doubles up for HTC

  96. 11:45 - The remaining 180 riders are in the neutral zone ahead of today's stage, which is about to get under way.

  97. 11:40 - Welcome to live coverage of stage 14 of the Vuelta, a 176km climbing route from Astorga to La Farrapona that features three big climbs, including a new summit finish at Lagos de Somiedo.