A historic treble: winner of the final time trial on Sunday in Santiago de Compostela, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) crushed the competition and climbed into the pantheon of the Tour of Spain, becoming the 3rd man to win the Vuelta three years in a row.
He won with an overwhelming lead of 4 minutes and 42 seconds over Spaniard Enric Mas (Movistar), 9th against the clock on Sunday during a day that saw the Italian Fabio Aru (Qhubeka) bid farewell to the professional peloton. This is the biggest gap between the winner of a Vuelta and his runner-up in 24 years (Alex Zülle with 5’07 ahead of Fernando Escartin in 1997).
“As long as you win, it’s always so beautiful”
The Australian Jack Haig (Bahrain) completes the podium at 7’40 – an abysmal delay – of the untouchable Slovenian who celebrated his victory by donning a “Trioglic” t-shirt in the company of all his teammates. In the final time trial, Roglic dislodged Magnus Cort Nielsen (Educaton First), who long held the fastest time on Sunday in the 21st stage between Padron and Santiago de Compostela before the Slovenian’s recital, more fast 14 seconds.
He even paid the luxury of overtaking on the steps of the cathedral the Spaniard Enric Mas, who left two minutes before him. “It’s amazing, it’s crazy. Sometimes you win a lot, sometimes nothing. But as long as you win, it’s always so beautiful, ”summed up the Slovenian champion at the finish.
– Borja Cuadrado (@BorjaCuadrado) September 5, 2021
In the Galician capital which had already crowned Alberto Contador in 2014, Roglic became the third man to win the Vuelta three years in a row after the Swiss Tony Rominger (1992, 1993, 1994) and the Spaniard Roberto Heras (2003, 2004, 2005). It is only one victory away from the record for coronations of Heras (4), the last crowning of which, in 2005, was marred by a positive control for EPO which was subsequently invalidated because it was deemed fraudulent.
Already winner of the stopwatch of the first stage in Burgos, Roglic spent the first week in red, before giving way to the leader of the Norwegian Odd Stefan Eiking (Intermarché – Wanty-Gobert) in the second week.
The end of a beautiful summer
He then flew over the 17th and 18th stages, the queen stages of this edition with arrivals at altitude at the lakes of Covadonga and at the top of the unprecedented Gamoniteiru, to regain the first place overall and end up securing a fourth stage victory in the 2021 edition and a third coronation on Sunday.
He thus surfs on his performance at the end of July at the foot of Mount Fuji, where he won Olympic gold in the time trial, and takes his revenge on his aborted Tour de France due to a bad fall from the 8th stage.