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Vuelta beach stage removed from general classification following complaints from riders

The controversial 7.5km Team Time Trial course itself won't change, but its classification will, in response to concerns from riders...

The first stage of the Vuelta on Saturday has been removed from general classification following complaints from riders about a section that runs on sand. The 7.4km time trial route will now not count for the individual classification, only for teams.

Photos emerged yesterday, from riders testing out the route, that almost half of it - 4km - was on a sandy beach. 

Following complaints from riders yesterday, a statement was issued saying the Team Time Trial stage will still take place on the planned route, from Puerta Banus to Marbella on the Costa del Sol, which traverses wooden boardwalk as well as sandy beach, but the rules will change.

- Riddle of the Sands - Vuelta stars perplexed by beachfront team time trial course

The statement, according to Bicyclismo, reads: "The Technical Jury, having received the concerns of teams and riders and after an inspection of the course with the technical director of the race, and after obtaining the agreement of the UCI has decided... the stage will be held on the planned route, [but] the recorded time will be counted for the team classification and not for the individual general classification."

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