The 7th stage of the Vuelta a Espana saw Louis Meintjes impress yet again as he climbed with all the favourites to eventually finish the stage in 9th place. The stage win went to the early breakaway rider, Bert-Jan Lindeman (Lotto-Jumbo).
Today’s 191km stage saw the break get away in the very early kilometres of the race. 5 riders made up the escape group and after building up a gap of 14 minutes at one point, it was looking good for the attackers. Movistar and Tinkoff eventually came to the party and started chasing but it would prove to be a little too late.
The 5 leaders started the final cat 1 climb to the line with an 8 minute lead and this would prove to be enough by just over 30 seconds as Lindeman just got the better off breakaway counterpart Ilia Koshevoy (Katusha) on the 18km climb.
Fabio Aru (Astana) was the first of the favourites home in 3rd place, he managed to steal 7 seconds from the rest of the GC contenders group. Louis was part of this select GC group and managed to sprint across the line in a terrific 9th place on the stage. The result was also good enough to see Louis move up to 15th overall.
Louis Meintjes – Rider
The break went early today and then the race was pretty controlled all day before the run in to the final started. The guys looked after me all day, it was really hot so I got a lot of ice and a lot of water. In the final I just stayed with the front group and sprinted at the end. The climb was pretty fast and there was a big group going up there but I think the heat was the deciding factor. You could see some guys were just tired before they even got the climb so the heat was a big factor today. I had good legs though so I hope it continues.