VUELTA Tour of Spain: Quintana goes solo to win stage two, Roche leads

Nairo Quintana, winner of stage two of the Vuelta a Espana

Colombia’s Nairo Quintana held off a strong chasing pack to win the second stage of the Vuelta but Nicolas Roche is the overall leader.

Nairo Quintana burst away three kilometres from the finish with a brilliant attack to win stage two of the Vuelta a Espana in Calpe and Nicolas Roche took the red jersey on Sunday.

The Movistar rider made his move from a group of six and held on to take the victory by a margin of five seconds.

Roche took over as race leader from Miguel Angel Lopez after finishing the 199.6km ride from Benidorm in second place.

Primoz Roglic, Rigoberto Uran and Fabio Aru completed the top five on a day in which the riders tackled three categorised climbs.

Quintana was cautious over his chances of mounting a bid for the title, but the Colombian made an early statement.

There was a split in the race following a battle in the final climb of the Alto de Puig Llorenca 20km from the end and it was 29-year-old Quintana who emerged from an elite group to go solo and cling on.

Roche will don La Roja for the first time in six years after a strong ride on day two.

Alejandro Valverde had set a quick tempo in a bunch of 20 in the leading group before the six-strong riders took the initiative, meaning an expected battle between the sprinters failed to materialise.

STAGE RESULT

1. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 5:11:17
2. Nicolas Roche (Team Sunweb) +00:05
3. Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma)
4. Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First)
5. Fabio Aru (UAE Team Emirates)

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification
1. Nicolas Roche (Team Sunweb) 5:26:12
2. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) +00:02
3. Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First) +00:08

Points Classification
1. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) 25
2. Nicolas Roche (Team Sunweb) 20
3. Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) 17

King of the Mountains
1. Angel Madrazo Ruiz (Burgos BH) 8
2. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) 5
3. Sander Armee (Lotto Soudal) 4

WHAT’S NEXT?

A 188km stage from Ibi to Alicante along rolling roads, with 38km mostly downhill to the finish on Monday.

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