photo credit @ Orica – GreenEDGE/Twitter
Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEDGE) won stage 5 of this year’s Vuelta a Espana in Ronda, Spain today, marking the young Australian rider’s first Grand Tour victory.
With a final surge to the line, Ewan managed to nix heavy-weight sprinters Peter Sagan and John Degenkolb, during today’s waning moments to seize the stage victory.
“It was super-tough up there. I didn’t realize it was going to be so hard,” said Ewan. “My team put me in perfect position. I knew it was a little bit too early, so I dropped back a few spots to get on Degenkolb’s wheel, and I just waited and waited. And it turned out perfect.”
Meanwhile, despite finishing well-down on the list of today’s stage, Tom Dumoulin succeeded in taking control of the overall race lead, by one second over the previous leader, Esteban Chaves (Orica-GreenEdge).
A three-man breakaway group containing Tsgabu Grmay (Lampre-Merida), Iljo Keisse (Etixx-QuickStep) and Antoine Duchesne (Europcar), got underway after about 20 kilometers of racing.
From there, the escapees remained out front for most of today’s stage. However, with 18 kilometers to go, Iljo Keisse (Etixx-Quick-Step) managed to jettison his two breakaway companions.
However, his time out front was short-lived, as the Etixx-QuickStep rider was eventually caught by the peloton a further 8 kilometers later.
At that point, Orica-GreenEdge took control over the pace setting – heading into the final two kilometers.
At one point, it looked like Tinkoff-Saxo had thrown a wretch in the works of Orica-GreenEDGE, as Sagan began moving into position during the final 600 meters.
Then came Giant-Alpecin’s Degenkolb as well. But, the determined Australian team managed to bring Ewan up to the front into position also. And, from there, the Orica-GreenEDGE rider leaped from Degenkolb’s wheel during the closing 100 meter uphill finish – to capture the win.
“It’s an incredible feeling,” said Ewan. “This is by far the biggest victory of my career. When I crossed the line, it was just so much emotion. I was so happy.”
Stage 5 Results
AUS 1 EWAN, Caleb (ORICA GreenEDGE) 3:57:28
GER 2 DEGENKOLB, John (TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN)
SVK 3 SAGAN, Peter (TINKOFF – SAXO)
LUX 4 DRUCKER, Jean-Pierre (BMC RACING)
ESP 5 ROJAS GIL, Jose Joaquin (MOVISTAR) + 2
ITA 6 SBARAGLI, Kristian (MTN – QHUBEKA)
ITA 7 POZZOVIVO, Domenico (AG2R LA MONDIALE)
ESP 8 MORENO FERNANDEZ, Daniel (KATUSHA)
BEL 9 VAN DER SANDE, Tosh (LOTTO SOUDAL)
BEL 10 MAES, Nikolas (ETIXX – QUICK STEP)
BEL 11 VAN ASBROECK, Tom (LOTTO NL – JUMBO)
GBR 12 FROOME, Christopher (SKY)
FRA 13 LEMOINE, Cyril (COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS)
COL 14 DUQUE, Leonardo Fabio (COLOMBIA)
NED 15 DUMOULIN, Tom (TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN)
NED 16 VAN WINDEN, Dennis (LOTTO NL – JUMBO)
ESP 17 SANCHEZ GONZALEZ, Samuel (BMC RACING)
POL 18 MAJKA, Rafal (TINKOFF – SAXO)
ESP 19 RODRIGUEZ OLIVER, Joaquin (KATUSHA) + 8
BEL 20 STUYVEN, Jasper (TREK FACTORY RACING)
COL 21 CHAVES RUBIO, Jhoan Esteban (ORICA GreenEDGE)
IRL 22 ROCHE, Nicolas (SKY)
COL 23 QUINTANA ROJAS, Nairo Alexander (MOVISTAR)
COL 24 HENAO MONTOYA, Sergio Luis (SKY)
ESP 25 SANCHEZ GIL, Luis Leon (ASTANA)
USA 26 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING)
IRL 27 MARTIN, Daniel (TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN)
ITA 28 ARU, Fabio (ASTANA)
ESP 29 LANDA MEANA, Mikel (ASTANA)
FRA 30 HUREL, Tony (EUROPCAR)
ESP 31 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY)
FRA 32 SICARD, Romain (EUROPCAR)
ESP 33 VALVERDE BELMONTE, Alejandro (MOVISTAR)
ITA 34 BRAMBILLA, Gianluca (ETIXX – QUICK STEP)
BEL 35 MONFORT, Maxime (LOTTO SOUDAL)
POR 36 CARDOSO, Andre Fernando S. Martins (TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN)
USA 37 CRADDOCK, Lawson (TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN)
COL 38 TORRES AGUDELO, Rodolfo Andres (COLOMBIA) + 16
ESP 39 MAS BONET, Luis (CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA)
BEL 40 DE CLERCQ, Bart (LOTTO SOUDAL) + 17
LTU 41 BAGDONAS, Gediminas (AG2R LA MONDIALE)
General Classification after Stage 5
NED 1 DUMOULIN, Tom (TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN) 17:09:06
COL 2 CHAVES RUBIO, Jhoan Esteban (ORICA GreenEDGE) + 1
IRL 3 ROCHE, Nicolas (SKY) + 16
IRL 4 MARTIN, Daniel (TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN) + 25
ESP 5 VALVERDE BELMONTE, Alejandro (MOVISTAR) + 29
ESP 6 MORENO FERNANDEZ, Daniel (KATUSHA) + 31
GBR 7 FROOME, Christopher (SKY) + 35
ESP 8 RODRIGUEZ OLIVER, Joaquin (KATUSHA) + 36
COL 9 QUINTANA ROJAS, Nairo Alexander (MOVISTAR) + 37
ITA 10 ARU, Fabio (ASTANA) + 48
ESP 11 LANDA MEANA, Mikel (ASTANA) + 52
ESP 12 NIEVE ITURALDE, Mikel (SKY)
USA 13 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING) + 56
ITA 14 POZZOVIVO, Domenico (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 59
ITA 15 BRAMBILLA, Gianluca (ETIXX – QUICK STEP) + 1:05
COL 16 HENAO MONTOYA, Sergio Luis (SKY) + 1:07
POL 17 MAJKA, Rafal (TINKOFF – SAXO) + 1:09
ESP 18 SANCHEZ GIL, Luis Leon (ASTANA) + 1:15
POR 19 CARDOSO, Andre Fernando S. Martins (TEAM CANNONDALE – GARMIN) + 1:16
RSA 20 MEINTJES, Louis (MTN – QHUBEKA) + 1:31
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