From start to finish at this year’s Vuelta a España, the final grand tour of the season, Primož Roglič showed no weakness, putting together by far the most dominant of his three consecutive overall wins at the race. It began with a time trial victory and ended the same way, with a couple more stage wins sprinkled in between for good measure. And it wasn’t just Roglič who rode impeccably. His Jumbo-Visma team put together a tactically near-perfect race as well. Is there anything any other team could have done to put them on the defensive? What would it have taken to dethrone the Slovenian champ?
This week on Bobby & Jens, Bobby Julich and Jens Voigt dive into those questions and more as they take a look back at a Vuelta that produced more than a few great moments.
For both Bobby and Jens, the return of sprinter Fabio Jakobsen to his winning ways after a career-threatening crash at last year’s Tour of Poland was a huge highlight of the race. Then there was Magnus Cort Nielsen’s dominant performance that yielded three stage wins, and nearly a fourth at the final TT as well. What clicked for him that hadn’t clicked before?
And we couldn’t have a discussion about the 2021 Vuelta without the drama inside the Movistar camp. Could the team have come closer to the top step of the podium if Alejandro Valverde hadn’t crashed out? And more importantly, why did Miguel Ángel López quit the race on stage 20? Both hosts have passionate thoughts about it. For Jensie, who “would kill for a top 10 in a grand tour,” the dropping out from that position in GC doesn’t sit right. But is it just a problem with one rider, or with the team as well? López isn’t the first Colombian rider from within the Movistar camp to air grievances about the predominantly Spanish outfit.
The discussion also turns to future grand tours. Roglič, along with his compatriot Tadej Pogačar, have dominated the three-week races recently. But there are other strong riders, too, like Egan Bernal. If they’re all on their top form in the same race, who wins?
Listen to the latest episode of Bobby & Jens for the full conversation!
“Bobby & Jens” is a weekly VeloNews podcast brought to you by Zwift. It stars former pros Bobby Julich and Jens Voigt and features conversations with top athletes, coaches, emerging stars, and other newsmakers from the wide world of cycling. A new episode drops every Friday. Subscribe now wherever you get your podcasts.