Froome ticks off another summit finish to boost historic Vuelta bid

Jerome Frank
September 5, 2017

Chris Froome extended his overall lead in La Vuelta after Colombian rider Miguel Angel Lopez won the mountainous 129-kilometre 15th stage from Alcala la Real to Sierra Nevada.

But Froome's overall lead was trimmed by four seconds as Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida), second overall, pipped him to third place on the day, picking up four bonus seconds on the line.

"There was a lot of big attacks today and the team stayed with me", said Froome.

"As soon as the breakaway went the guys went up to the front and they basically controlled the race, nearly from the start to finish, so hats off to them".

"I tried my best so I can't be disappointed with that", he said. "As a team we deserve it because we've been active".

Lopez dominated the last climb of an action-packed day to claim a solo victory ahead of Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha-Alpecin) and Wilco Kelderman (Sunweb).

Nicknamed "Superman", Lopez has shown off his strength on a series of punishing climbs in the past week as he also finished second on a category one summit finish on Saturday.

Adam Yates (Orica-Scott) had been alone out front with roughly 4km to go when Lopez made contact then flew past the Briton.

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Victory also moved Lopez up to sixth overall, ahead of Astana teammate and 2015 Vuelta victor Fabio Aru.

Froome is trying to win the Vuelta for the first time after finishing the grand tour runner-up on three occasions.

"Sleep all day", confessed Froome when asked of his plans for the rest day.

'That (when Contador and Lopez attacked) was really the danger moment for us.

"I want to enjoy myself, just like I've been enjoying myself up to now", he continued.

"I still had Gracie Elvin and Sarah Roy with me at the finish to keep me safe after Georgia Williams and Jess Allen did all of the early work".

The man from Team SKY's success allowed him to extend his overall lead in the race and retain the coveted red jersey.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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