The up and down stage to Fisterra was ridden with a hot pace to get to the finale, but the road up to the lighthouse at La Etapa del Fin del Mundo (the end of the world) was the launching pad for only Daniel Moreno. Moreno, who tried in vain to get his stage win on the second stage only to be overtaken by Nicolas Roche, was able to hold off Fabian Cancellara and Micheal Matthews who were closing hard on the uphill finish.
The riders got their legs warmed up with around 35km to go as the peloton was taken up a brutal Cat3 climb to el Mirador del Ezaro along the coast which had ramps of 29%. With the peloton struggling with gearing on such extreme slopes, some of the group cam to a near standstill and the group was split with many sprinters and domestiques left behind.
With 14 km to go Nicolas Edet (COF) was reeled in and RadioShack had brought the group together as both the break was caught and the stragglers from the 30% climb had caught back on. Unexpectedly, the previous slopes hadn’t broken the peloton and all the sprinters were present for the uphill finish.
With 3km to go the road turned up and again we saw all of the aggression and speed of the group dialed down a notch as everyone seemed nervous to take control. With 1km remaining Moreno, in the climber’s jersey, jumped from the hesitant group and held to the line as the rest tried unsuccessfully to bring him back. The finishing speed was extremely high and too much for Red jersey wearer Chris Horner who finished in a large group 6 seconds behind, so the red jersey falls back on the shoulder of Vincenzo Nibali.
2013 Vuelta Stage 4 Top Five
1. Daniel Moreno (KAT)__________4h37’36”
2. Fabian Cancellara (RLT)
3. Michael Matthews (OGE)
4. Gianni Meersman (OPQ)
5. Bauke Mollema (BEL)
Overall Classification after 4 stages
1. Vincenzo Nibali (AST)_______14h15’30”
2. Chris Horner (RLT)_________+3″
3. Nicolas Roche (TST)_________+8″
4. Haimar Zubeldia (RLT)______+16″
5. Alejandro Valverde (MOV)____+21″
6. Robert Kiserlovski (RLT)____+26″
7. Rigoberto Uran (SKY)_______+28″
8. Daniel Moreno (KAT)________+31″
9. Rafal Majka (TST)__________+38″
10. Roman Kreuziger (TST)______+42″
14. Bauke Mollema (BEL)_______+49″
16. Joaquim Rodriguez (KAT)___+53″
21. Michele Scarponi (LAM)____+1’15″
26. Mikel Nieve (EUS)_________+1’30″
27. Ivan Basso (CAN)_________+1’32″
29. Thibault Pinot (FDJ)_______+1’41″
30. Domenico Pozzovivo (ALM)__+1’45″
31. Dan Martin (GRM)_________+1’47″
40. David Arroyo (CJR)________+2’52″
42. Sergio Luis Henao (SKY)___+2’59″
47. Samuel Sanchez (EUS)______+3’57″
51. Igor Anton (EUS)__________+5’42″