Tuesday 21 November 2017

Nicolas Roche finishes third on stage 15 of the Vuelta

Nicolas Roche (left) on the road yesterday
Nicolas Roche (left) on the road yesterday

Ireland's Nicolas Roche produced a huge performance to finish third on stage 15 of the Vuelta a Espana but remains sixth overall.

France's Alexandre Geniez arrived in his homeland to a winner's reception after clinching victory on stage 15.

Towards the end of a 225 kilometre route that begin in the Pyrenean principality of Andorra before passing through Spain and ending at the French ski resort of Peyragudes, FDJ rider Geniez broke away before the final category-one climb to cross the finish line in six hours, 20 minutes and 12 seconds.

Michele Scarponi (Lampre-Merida) and Nicolas Roche (Team Saxo-Tinkoff) were second and third while classification leader Nibali (Astana Pro Team) responded to attacks from Joaquim Rodriguez (Team Katusha), Chris Horner (RadioShack-Leopard) and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) to take fourth and keep hold of the red jersey with a 50-second lead.

The top five remains unchanged with Nibali leading Horner, Valverde, Rodriguez and fellow Italian Domenico Pozzovivo (Ag2r-La Mondiale).

Monday's stage - the third, last and arguably least arduous day spent traversing the Pyrenees - covers the 146.8km between Graus and Sallent de Gallego in the Huesca province.

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