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Along the water
The Mediterranean is never far from sight on this flat stage that hugs the Costa Blanca, briefly loops inland and, after passing through the city of Cartagena, heads toward the Mar Menor lagoon; the peloton then races north along a narrow spit of land with water on both sides to finish in the tourist resort of La Manga. The aerial shots should be spectacular, while possible coastal winds will add to the challenges of what should be this Vuelta’s fourth sprint finish. An early breakaway could stick, but the sprinters’ teams should still be fresh enough to control matters. Another chance for Démare to add to his potential list of Vuelta stage wins that began in his only other appearance in 2015.