Vuelta a España: Brambilla moves up in the GC
It was another good day for Etixx – Quick-Step, as the Italian showed his improving form, while Gianni Meersman kept the green jersey.
A substantial escape was in the spotlight during stage 6 of Vuelta a España (Monforte de Lemos – Luintra, 163.2 km), but only after more than 60 kilometers from the start, as the pace of the first hour was so intense that any action, individual or collective, was doomed as soon as it broke clear. Eventually, the peloton slowed down and 11 riders got the much desired opportunity, establishing a narrow lead of just three minutes, which was controlled at all times by Movistar and Orica-GreenEdge.
On Alto Alenza, a 10.9-km long second-category climb, the front group was blown to pieces, as only Mathias Frank (IAM Cyclimg) stayed at the front and continued his solo adventure until the final five kilometers, where he was joined by Simon Yates (Orica-GreenEdge), who attacked from the bunch on the unclassified climb which shredded the pack. The Brit dropped his companion and soloed to the win, with the podium being rounded out by Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) and Fabio Felline (Trek-Segrafredo).
Four Etixx – Quick-Step men came with the elite group, which concluded the stage around half a minute behind the winner. Highest ranked rider of the team was Gianluca Brambilla, in 12th, who jumped one place in the general classification, up to 9th, another result which underlines his good condition for the last Grand Tour of the year. Teammate David De La Cruz is in 13th place, not far behind, while double stage winner Gianni Meersman completed the final day in Galicia safely and retained the lead in the points standings, which will give him at least one more day in the green jersey.
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele