Philippe Gilbert wins action-packed stage in Vuelta a España
Sep 11 2019 10:25 pm CET

Philippe Gilbert wins action-packed stage in Vuelta a España
Philippe Gilbert wins action-packed stage in Vuelta a España
Photo of Philippe Gilbert © Mary Cárdenas /

Deceuninck-Quick-Step's Philippe Gilbert has taken the victory of the 17th stage of the Vuelta a España on a crazy day that saw Nairo Quintana climb back up to a podium position.

The 17th Stage of the Spanish grand tour had the potential of being a calm transition day before heading to the last mountain days, but this is the Vuelta so everything can change in one day. Just after the real start, a group of around 35 riders escaped including Nairo Quintana and three more Movistar riders.

This group accelerated right away and managed to create a gap with the pack that kept growing and growing, while teams like Astana, UAE-Team Emirates and Primoz Roglic's Jumbo Visma pulled the pack to control the losses. The wind also had a big influence and left riders behind in both groups.

While the group in front managed to have a maximum advantage of six minutes -which would put Quintana in a podium position again- Marc Soler (Movistar) changed the pace in the favourites' group and left Roglic without teammates and Tadej Pogacar with only one, while Astana had several members that worked hard enough to bring its leader Miguel Ángel López closer to the front.

Zdenek Stybar (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) made a move in front with two kilometres to go and a group of around five riders went on to catch him, which it did just before the last kilometre. Then Sam Bennett (Bora-hansgrohe) launched a final sprint and he seemed to create a good gap with the rest but soon Philippe Gilbert got to his wheel and the Irish national champion couldn't hold the pace any longer. The Belgian made a last acceleration to take the day's victory, while Quintana crossed the finish line ten seconds later.

The group of the Red Jersey wearer arrived to the finish line five minutes and 29 seconds behind Gilbert and five minutes and 19 seconds behind the Colombian of Movistar, which means that Roglic maintains the lead of the General Classification for another day while Quintana climbed to the second position and Alejandro Valverde, Pogacar and López dropped one position each.



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