Ben King takes stage victory at Vuelta a España, Kwiatkowski remains in Red
Aug 29 2018 12:01 am CET

Ben King takes stage victory at Vuelta a España, Kwiatkowski remains in Red
Ben King takes stage victory at Vuelta a España, Kwiatkowski remains in Red
Team Dimension Data

Ben King (Dimension Data) has taken the victory at the fourth stage of the Vuelta a España. Michal Kwiatkowski kept the Red Jersey by arriving to the finish line with the favourites' group.

The route of the fourth stage of the Spanish race included two climbs of the first category, including a mountain finish at the Puerto de Alfacar. The day kicked off with an escape of nine riders that included Jelle Wallays, Ben King, Pierre Rolland, Lars Boom and Luis Angel Mate, among others.

The peloton was pulled only by Team Sky for most of the course. Other teams didn't want to help on the chase for the escapees, who got an advantage of more than nine minutes over the pack. At the start of the last climb of the day, Wallays (Lotto-Soudal), King (Dimension Data) and Nikita Stalnov (Astana) attacked from the front group and soon built a gap of half a minute with the rest of the escapees.

With 11 kilometres to go, Wallays couldn't hold the pace of the other two men in the front group and was dropped. When the peloton approached the start of the last climb, Movistar took the lead to set a high pace. Kilometres later, LottoNL-Jumbo took the leading position of the pack and set a pace that left riders like Vincenzo Nibali, Ilnur Zakarin and Richie Porte struggling at the back.

The winner of the Tour of Utah, Sepp Kuss, set a high rhythm that left riders like Nairo Quintana (Movistar), Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and race leader Michal Kwiatkowski (Sky) without any domestiques. At around four kilometres to go, Yates attacked and created a gap with the reduced peloton while at the back, Alejandro Valverde also launched an attack and took all the other favourites at his wheel.

At the front, Rolland got to the two men but as he contacted them, they started the final sprint, in which King showed to have the strongest legs by crossing the finish line ahead of Stalnov. Yates finished the stage at two minutes and 48 seconds from the American and was followed by Bora-hansgrohe's Emmanuel Buchmann.

Valverde crossed the finish line three minutes and 14 seconds behind King and the peloton did so one second later. Kwiatkowski keeps the GC lead and is followed by Buchmann at seven seconds and Yates at ten seconds.

The top five of the overall standings is completed by Valverde, who is at 12 seconds from the Pole, and Jon Izagirre, who is 30 seconds behind the race leader.




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