Roglic’s incident sees the lucky Evenepoel keep the lead

Roglic’s incident sees the lucky Evenepoel keep the lead

Roglic’s incident sees the lucky Evenepoel keep the lead

Mads Pedersen took her second stage win at this year’s Vuelta a Espana, but there was plenty of drama in a frantic final in Tomares.

Reigning three-time champion Primoz Roglic looked set to gain ground on leader Remco Evenepoel when he attacked in the final kilometers.

The Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team took the lead in the remaining 10km of Tuesday’s 188km flat stage from Sanlucar de Barrameda in Andalusia.

Yet it was Roglic’s Jumbo-Visma that ended up in a better position to deliver an attack in the final sprint and this proved to be the case when the Slovenian opened a puff with just under 3km to go.

Pedersen and Pascal Ackermann followed Roglic as Evenepoel’s frustration was compounded by a puncture, but there was more drama to come.

Danny van Poppel and Fred Wright had joined the leading group, and it was the latter who played a pivotal role in an accident that could secure Evenepoel’s first Grand Tour title.

Just 100 meters from the end, Roglic gave way to the mighty Pedersen and, on his way back, hooked Wright at the back of the pack, landing hard on the road.

He managed to finish the race with the help of his team, but he looked in great pain, with a bad gash in his right knee. Evenepoel finished over three minutes behind. However, although there was initially confusion as to whether the 3km rule was in effect, he ultimately lost only eight seconds to his rival.

Evenepoel, who led the race for 11 days, drove straight to Roglic at the finish and told reporters: “I heard Primoz crashed, so I really hope he is fine and can continue the race.

“We all know Primoz is explosive, so a final like this is really made for him. That makes it even more of a shame for him that he crashed. You never want anyone to fall, I hope he’s okay.”

Evenepoel and Roglic benefited from the 3km rule, which is in place to ensure that if a rider suffers a fall, puncture or mechanical accident in the last 3km, he is credited with the same finish time as the rider (s) with whom he was at the time of the accident.

Two ahead for Pedersen but Roglic’s story hopes may be over

You can’t take anything away from Pedersen, who admitted he was caught off guard by Roglic’s brilliantly timed attack, one who almost certainly would have seen the Jumbo-Visma leader take the red jersey if it wasn’t for that fall, which would have The 32-year-old’s hopes for an unprecedented fourth consecutive Vuelta title could very well have been dashed.

“It was a really smart move [from Roglic]. Everyone was really on the edge, “Pedersen said.” I didn’t hear it. I wanted to go to him here and saw that he was with his clothes destroyed. It is a pity that he fell. He wasn’t lucky this year. I hope it’s not that bad, so he can continue to fight for the victory of the Vuelta. “

Points leader Pedersen is the first Trek-Segafredo rider to win two stages in the same edition of the Vuelta da Alberto Contador in 2017, and is the third competitor to win more stages in this year’s race, after Sam Bennett and Richard Carapaz. (both two).

RESULT OF THE PHASE

1. Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) 4:45:29
2. At the same time Pascal Ackermann (UAE Team Emirates).
3. Danny van Poppel (BORA-Hansgrohe) at the same time
4. Fred Wright (Bahrain Victorious) at the same time
5. Quentin Pacher (Groupama-FDJ) +0: 08

RANKING RANKING

General classification

1. Remco Evenepoel (Alpha Quick-Step Vinyl) 61:26:26
2. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) +1: 26
3. Enric Mas (Movistar) +2: 01

Point classification

1. Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) 349
2. Fred Wright (victorious of Bahrain) 129
3. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) 107

King of the mountains

1. Jay Vine (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 59
2. Richard Carapaz (INEOS Greandiers) 30
3. Thymen Arensman (Team DSM) 22

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