Vuelta a España – Stage 3 – Valverde pips J-Rod at the line

Wow! That’s all that really needs to be said. A short uphill finish into Eibar from Faustino V produced an incredible level of racing. Exciting and dynamic – two things that many whispered were missing from this year’s Tour de France. In an incredible display of attacking, Alberto Contador tried to break every last contender on the climb today attacking 6 times. Eventually, it was only Alejandro Valverde and Joaquim Rodriguez who were able to match him as Froome put on a brave display of defensive riding spinning shut the gaps and finishing with the lead four.

The stage was controlled by Movistar throughout the day as they had the leader’s jersey from the weekend time trial (which we missed due to our Bike Tour around Nelson, BC). Movistar kept tabs on a dangerous looking break which featured Philippe Gilbert amongst the group of seven. As the break was caught and the final climb approached, it was team Sky and Ian Stannard doing all the work to keep Froome at the front and out of trouble. On the final climb, Rigoberto Uran and Froome tried to do there best to keep a lid on things, but the trio of Valverde, J-Rod and Contador were far too aggressive. Excellent!

Stage 3 Top Five
1. Alejandro Valverde (MOV)_____3h49’37”
2. Joaquim Rodriguez (KAT)
3. Chris Froome (SKY)
4. Alberto Contador (STB)
5. Daniel Moreno (KAT)__________+9″

Overall Classification after Stage 3
1. Alejandro Valverde (MOV)______8h46’56”
2. Benat Intxausti (MOV)_________+18″
3. Joaquim Rodriguez (KAT)_______+19″
4. Chris Froome (SKY)____________+20″
5. Alberto Contador (STB)________+24″
6. Bauke Mollema (RAB)___________+28″
7. Robert Gesink (RAB)___________+28″
8. Rigoberto Uran (SKY)__________+30″
9. Daniel Moreno (KAT)___________+33″
10. Igor Anton (EUS)_____________+46″

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