Groves claims second straight Vuelta a Espana stage


Kaden Groves has won a second consecutive stage in this year’s Vuelta a Espana, edging out a charging Filippo Ganna to claim stage five on Wednesday.

A relatively uneventful 186.5km trek from Morella to Burriana ended in the predicted bunch sprint, with Alpecin-Deceuninck’s Groves holding off a surging Ganna.

Remco Evenepoel retained the overall leader’s red jersey after finishing safely in the pack having picked up useful time bonuses on the last intermediate sprint.

Groves strengthened his hold on the green jersey — leading the points standings — following up on his victory the day before.

“It’s a fantastic feeling, the second win of this Vuelta, and two in a row, it’s a great feeling, especially doing it with the green jersey,” Groves said. “At the end, it was a pretty hectic final today, similar to yesterday but without climbing. The wind and roundabouts made it quite nervous but my team was fantastic again.”

A crash 3km from the finish raised the tension but once Groves was positioned into the lead by his teammates he held on despite the efforts of Ganna who finished like an express train.

Evenepoel won an intermediate sprint to collect bonus seconds that allowed him to increase his lead slightly ahead of a mountain stage on Thursday.

“Taking the bonus seconds was not necessarily the plan but we were in front and I saw an opportunity, that’s why I just went for it,” he said.

“It was a nice one to grab. I thought it was just three seconds but in the end they told me it was six [seconds], so it’s pretty nice.”


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