Kristian Sbaragli (Team Dimension Data) finished inside the top 5 on stage 12. Louis Meintjes got into the break with 90km to go but couldn’t hold off the chasing peloton. Sbaragli crossed the line in fourth place behind stage winner Jens Keukeleire (Orica-BikeExchange).
It took a long time until a group of six riders managed to form the break of the day. On the cat.1 Puerto de las Alisas, Peter Kennaugh, David Lopez (both Sky), Darwin Atapuma (BMC), Romain Hardy (Cofidis), Kenny Elissonde (FDJ), and Louis Meintjes (Lampre-Merida) reached the summit at kilometer 50 with a gap over the peloton. Yet, Astana wasn’t keen on allowing them too much room to play with.
Atapuma was the first to drop out of the lead group after crashing on the descent from the first climb. The other five continued but weren’t able to grow their gap beyond the 3-minute mark. In the end, they were reeled back on the El Vivero, a cat.2 climb which needed to be ridden twice today, with 18km left to race.
Dries Devenyns (IAM) was the next to try his luck. He crossed the summit alone, 30″ ahead of the group of the GC favourites. Sbaragli was one of them and when it all came back together with 1.5km to go, he found himself in a good position.
A late attack by Simon Yates (Orica-BikeExchange) in the final put his teammate Keukeleire in a great position, as when the Australian was caught, Keukeleire could open the sprint. No one was able to come past the Belgian, Maxime Bouet (Etixx-QuickStep) and Fabio Felline (Trek-Segafredo) rounded out the podium, with the latter just getting the better of Sbaragli on the line.