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Vuelta a España. Stage 16. Jakob Fuglsang wins atop Alto de la Cubilla, Miguel Angel Lopez keeps on attacking

Jakob Fuglsang took his maiden Grand tour stage victory winning today the 16th stage of the Vuelta a España atop Alto de la Cubilla.

Fuglsang and Luis Leon Sanchez both made part of a daily breakaway, which was able to stay clear away until the finish line. Together, Jakob and Luis Leon played a perfect team’s tactic: Sanchez did a strong attack to reduce the leading group, while Fuglsang made his decisive move with 5 km to go. Finally, Jakob Fuglsang won, and Luis Leon Sanchez finished third.

- I am super happy with my win! Finally, I’ve got a Grand tour stage victory! It a great continuation of my best season so far. I am happy that after a disappointing Tour de France I’ve managed to get my form back here at the Vuelta. It was our plan to go in a breakaway together with Luis Leon. Actually, I tried also yesterday, but it did not work out. Now, everything was perfect. In the morning we were talking about two options for this stage – to try to go in a break for the stage, but if it wouldn’t work out, to stay in front and to help Miguel Angel on the final climb. I want to thank Luis Leon for a great help he provided me on the last climb. He made a super strong attack with about 9 km to go and after that we found ourselves in a small group of 5 riders. He continued pushing hard and on a steep sector I attacked and only Brambilla was able to follow me. A bit later, with maybe 5 km to go I tried again and this time I went away alone. I have a great feeling right now with this success, which confirms I am on the right way for the Worlds and the final part of the season. However, we still have the most important goal here – to help Miguel Angel Lopez to reach the podium and I am ready to help him with all my forces. We still have two difficult stages at the third week of the race, so we will keep on fighting, - said Jakob Fuglsang.

After a fast start in Pravia, a group of 17 riders went away together with Jakob Fuglsang and Luis Leon Sanchez. The leading group have opened a huge gap of 9 minutes and it looked enough to fight for the stage. Two Astana rider played out a perfect stage, ended with a victory and a stage podium place.

Behind the shoulders of the breakaway Astana Pro Team also spent a very nice day, moving up in front of the main group at the beginning of the last climb Alto de la Cubilla. Omar Fraile, Dario Cataldo and Ion Izagirre produced a big selection in the bunch and shortly after it was Miguel Angel Lopez, who attacked. He was caught back by the rivals but continued attacking again and again. In the end of the day, Lopez crossed the finish line together with Tadej Pogacar and Primoz Roglic but was able to drop Alejandro Valverde and Nairo Quintana.

In the end of the day Roglic moves into the second rest day of La Vuelta as the GC leader, Valverde is still second, 2.48 behind, Pogacar is third, +3.42 and Miguel Angel Lopez keeps his fourth position, +3.59.

The second rest day Astana Pro Team will spend in Burgos.

Photo credit: © Getty Images

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