La Vuelta a España 2015 Stages
Peter Sagan (Tinkoff Saxo) won the bunch sprint in Málaga edging out Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis, Solutions Credits) and John Degenkolb (Team Giant-Alpecin) for the win.
I’m very happy for this victory because I think it’s good for the entire team. This is a good start to the Vuelta a España. And finally I had a victory! I’m always trying to get the win and someday it has to come. And it did today, also thanks to my teammates, who were pulling all day and I’m very grateful for their effort. I’ve had many second places but you cannot always finish second. So today I finished first. That’s how cycling is, sometimes you’re up and sometimes you’re down. I was searching for a victory during the Tour and now it has come.”
– Peter Sagan, Tinkoff-Saxo
Esteban Chaves (Orica GreenEDGE) retained the overall lead 5 seconds ahead of Tom Dumoulin (Team Giant-Alpecin) and 15 seconds in front of Nicholas Roche (Team Sky).
The team worked fantastic today, all of the guys for me.
It’s really good to have the experienced guys like Mat Hayman, Simon Gerrans, Daryl Impey and Cameron Meyer to help keep the red jersey.
It’s a really big responsibility, but this is part of the game, this is beautiful.”
– Esteban Chaves (Orica GreenEDGE)
La Vuelta a España 2015 Stage 3: Mijas to Málaga
The day began with continued talk of the eventful stage 2, which saw a huge pile up with 30 km to go that resulted in numerous injuries and Vincenzo Nibali being ejected from the race for participating in a team car tow.
The jury also corrected yesterday’s classification granting Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and Dani Moreno (Katusha) the same time as Chris Froome (Team Sky), 30 seconds behind the stage winner Esteban Chaves (Orica-Greenedge).
The riders took the line in Mijas for the ride that quickly would head up the category 3 Alto de Mijas and then on to the category 1 Puerto del León at 76 km into the 158 km of the day’s route.
Immediately following the official start, the breakaway formed, and by 10 kilometers into the race, Sylvain Chavanel (IAM Cycling), Maarten Tjallingii (LottoNL-Jumbo), Walter Pedraza (Team Colombia), Martin Velits (Etixx-Quick Step), Alexis Gougeard (AG2R – La Mondiale), Omar Fraile (Caja Rural – Seguros RGA), Natnael Berhane (MTN-Qhubeka) and Ilia Koshevoy (Lampre-Merida) had nearly a minute on the main group.
Paolo Tiralongo (Astana) who started the day after suffering face, shoulder, hip and leg injuries in the stage 2 crash, abandoned shortly into the stage.
The breakaway crossed the top of Alto de Mijas with a three minute advantage over the peloton, as Omar Fraile (Caja Rural – Seguros RGA) picked up top points, followed by Sylvain Chavanel (IAM Cycling) and Natnael Berhane (MTN – Qhubeka).
The group maintained the time gap, reaching the second climb of the day, the category 1 Puerto del León, with Fraile once again crossing first, gathering enough points to move into the polka dot climbers jersey for stage 4.
It was a tough day for me. I’d set my sights on the mountain jersey, but soon had I regretted being in the break a bit. At first, I was part of a nice group, but later on three good climbers joined us. I still tried to make the best of it, though. On the first category climb, I tried to surprise the others with an all-or-nothing effort, but 200 metres from the top, I broke down.”
– Maarten Tjallingii, LottoNL-Jumbo
Following the climb, Tinkoff-Saxo began to apply pressure with a focus on delivering Sagan to one of the few anticipated bunch sprints in the race, bringing the gap down to just over one minute with 50 km remaining in the stage.
By 30 km to go, the peloton had swallowed up all of the breakaway riders except Gougeard and Tjallingii, who held out until 14 km from the finish, when they too were caught by the pack.
With the entire field together, Tinkoff-Saxo continued to ride at a heavy tempo on the front.
In a season of bad luck, Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) abandoned just before the finish due to a stomach virus. Cancellara broke two vertebrae in E3 Prijs Harelbeke and again in the third stage of the Tour de France.
After a year like this, you just don’t want to stop. I was alone on the road and had a lot of flashbacks of the past year. But I was feeling totally empty and in the end the most important thing is your health and we had to think about that too.”
–Fabian Cancellara, Trek Factory Racing
As the group approached the last kilometer, it was a skirmish between Giant-Alpecin and Cofidis to position Degenkolb and Bouhanni for the battle for the victory, but Peter Sagan joined the duo and and beat them at the line for the win.
Another fairly flat stage awaits the riders tomorrow with Stage 4 taking the riders along a 209 km route near the Spanish coastline with no categorized climbs, but with a technical last few kilometers.
La Vuelta a España 2015 Stage 3 Top 10
- Peter Sagan (SVK) #209
TINKOFF – SAXO 04h 06′ 46”
- Nacer Bouhanni (FRA) #51
COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS 04h 06′ 46” same time
- John Degenkolb (GER) #171
TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Jean-Pierre Drucker (LUX) #35
BMC RACING TEAM 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Maximiliano Richeze Ariel (ARG) #108
LAMPRE – MERIDA 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Kristian Baragli (ITA) #135
MTN – QHUBEKA 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Mitchell Docker (AUS) #142
ORICA GreenEDGE 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Jasper Stuyven (BEL) #215
TREK FACTORY RACING 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Vicente Reynes (ESP) #97
IAM CYCLING 04h 06′ 46” same time
- Tom Van Asbroeck (BEL) #197
TEAM LOTTO NL – JUMBO 04h 06′ 46” same time
La Vuelta a España 2015 General Classification Top 10 after Stage 3
- Esteban Chaves (COL) #141
ORICA GreenEDGE 08h 04′ 01”
- Tom Dumoulin (NED) #174
TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN 08h 04′ 06” + :05
- Nicolas Roche (IRL) #8
TEAM SKY 08h 04′ 16” + :15
- Daniel Martin (IRL) #156
TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN 08h 04′ 25” + :24
- Joaquim Rodriguez (ESP) #181
TEAM KATUSHA 08h 04′ 36” + :35
- Nairo Quintana (COL) #125
MOVISTAR TEAM 08h 04′ 37” + :36
- Alejandro Valverde (ESP) #121
MOVISTAR TEAM 08h 04′ 39” + :38
- Christopher Froome (GBR) #1
TEAM SKY 08h 04′ 41” + :40
- Daniel Moreno (ESP) #186
TEAM KATUSHA 08h 04′ 41” + :40
- Fabio Aru (ITA) #21
ASTANA PRO TEAM 08h 04′ 48” + :47
La Vuelta a España 2015 Jersey after Stage 3
Overall leader’s jersey (red): Esteban Chaves
Points jersey (green): Esteban Chaves, worn by Peter Sagan
Climber jersey (polka-dot): Omar Fraile
All rounder / Combination jersey (white): Esteban Chaves, worn by Tom Dumoulin
Date: 24 August, 2015
Distance: 158.4 km