Second win for David Gaudu and his team Groupama-FDJ (Photo AFP)

It looked awkward for Roglic on the final climb today, but he got help from teammate Hofstede, a survivor of the early breakaway. The Dutchman helped to limit the damage, while Carapaz did everything possible. He ran up to half a minute, a new disaster scenario lurked around the corner for Roglic. But it never came to that. Roglic also had to let Carthy ride, but he did not give away the overall victory. In the final kilometer, the Slovenian fumbled deep into his arsenal of strength once more and blasted solo to the finish. In the end, he was left with 24 seconds from his lead over Carapaz. Roglic wins the Vuelta for the second year in a row.
There was of course also the battle for the stage victory. From a large leading group of initially 34 riders, only Gaudu, Ion Izagirre, and Mäder remained on the final climb. Gaudu went solo and took his second stage victory in this Tour of Spain at La Cov. I was watching the race live on French Eurosport, and the commentators went berserk. Dan Martin had to let go in the latter stages of the climb, but kept the damage minimal and keeps his 4th in the GC, Sam Bennett came in on time but well back, his mind is on tomorrow and a possible winning sprint in Madrid
1 David Gaudu GFC 4:54:32
2 Gino Mäder NTT +28″
3 Ion Izagirre AST +1:05″
4 David De La Cruz UAD +1:05″
5 Mark Donovan SUN +1:53″
6 Michael Storer SUN @ s/t
7 Guillaume Martin COF +2:23″
8 Richard Carapaz IGD +2:35″
9 Hugh Carthy EF1 +2:50″
10 Primož Roglic TJV +2:56″
11 Enric Mas MOV +3:03″
12 Marc Soler MOV +3:16″
13 Dorian Godon ALM +3:21″
14 Aleksander Vlasov AST +3:38″
15 Alejandro Valverde MOV +3:45″
16 Stan Dewulf LTS @ s/t
17 Sergio Henao UAD +3:50″
18 Daniel Martin ISN +3:51″
19 Mattia Cattaneo DQT @s/t
20 Wout Poels TBM @s/t

Caracaz was giving it a last go…a very impressive rider (Photo @getty images)

(GC after stage 17) 1 Primož Roglic TJV 69:17:59
2 Richard Carapaz IGD +24″
3 Hugh Carthy EF1 +47″
4 Daniel Martin ISN +2:43″
5 Enric Mas MOV +3:36″
6 Wout Poels TBM +7:16″
7 David De La Cruz UAD +7:35″
8 David Gaudu GFC +7:45″
9 Felix Großschartner BOH +8:15″
10 Alejandro Valverde MOV +9:34″
11 Aleksander Vlasov AST +9:36″
12 George Bennett TJV +14:04″
13 Mikel Nieve MTS +14:47″
14 Guillaume Martin COF +15:07″
15 Sergio Henao UAD +15:36″
16 Sepp Kuss TJV +16:26″
17 Mattia Cattaneo DQT +17:09″
18 Marc Soler MOV +21:01″
19 Gorka Izagirre AST +21:46″
20 Gino Mäder NTT +43:39″