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Vuelta Stage 18: Ireland's Deignan outfoxes Kreuziger to win in Avila

Cervélo TestTeam rider from County Donegal leaps to ninth in GC

Image © Unipublic

Vuelta Stage 18: Talavera de la Reina - Avila, 165KM

Ireland’s Philip Deignan of Cervélo TestTeam came out ahead in a gripping, winner-takes-all game of cat-and-mouse against Liquigas rider Roman Kreuziger to claim Stage 18 of the Vuelta this afternoon in the walled city of Avila.

On a rainswept afternoon with the route punctuated by some tough climbs, the two had got off the front of the day’s breakaway to ride into Avila on their own, and in the final two kilometres, Kreuziger initially tried to stay on Deignan’s wheel in an attempt to remain in prime position for the final sprint.

But the Irishman took advantage of the twisting, cobbled roads in the city’s medieval centre to fall back behind the Czech, and when the latter launched an attack as the pair headed for the line, Deignan was able to keep pace and then overhaul him.

And with the peloton giving up the chase in the final 20 kilometres, eventually rolling in some ten minutes after the winner, the 26-year-old from County Donegal leaps up to ninth in the general classification, less than eight minutes down on race leader Alejandro Valverde of Caisse d’Epargne.

On the day’s penultimate descent, Euskaltel-Euskadi headed the peloton, perhaps hoping to capitalise on Samuel Sanchez’s expertise on wet roads to help him eat into Valverde’s lead, but Caisse d’Epargne kept a watchful eye on proceedings and the Olympic champion was unable to get clear.

Tomorrow’s Stage 19, covering 180 kilometres from Avila to La Granja, which feautures three Category 1 ascents, and Saturday’s individual time trial in Toledo, mark the last-chance saloon for the likes of Sanchez and Rabobank’s Robert Gesink to stake their claim for the golden jersey before the race ends in Madrid on Sunday.

Top 20 Stage 18

1) Philip Deignan (Cervelo TestTeam)      04:19:14
2) Roman Kreuziger (Liquigas)             00:00:03
3) Jacob Fuglsang (Saxo Bank)             00:00:16
4) Manuel Vázquez (Contentpoli-Ampo)      00:00:39
5) Igor Anton (Euskaltel-Euskadi)         00:00:41
6) Mikael Cherel (Francaise Des Jeux)     00:00:42
7) Rein Taaramae (Cofidis)                00:00:42
8) Rémy Di Gregorio (Francaise Des Jeux)  00:00:42
9) Jesús Hernández Blázquez (Astana)      00:00:42
10) Jesús Del Nero (Fuji-Servetto)        00:00:42
11) Tadej Valjavec (AG2R La Mondiale)     00:00:57
12) David Herrero (Xacobeo-Galicia)       00:01:20
13) Philippe Gilbert (Silence Lotto)      00:03:36
14) Bingen Fernández (Cofidis)            00:04:57
15) David Moncoutie (Cofidis)             00:04:57
16) Matti Breschel (Saxo Bank)            00:07:16
17) Cadel Evans (Silence Lotto)           00:09:40
18) David García (Xacobeo-Galicia)        00:09:40
19) Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi)    00:09:40
20) Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne) 00:09:40

Top 10 General Classification after Stage 18

1) Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne)  78:56:42
2) Robert Gesink (Rabobank)               00:00:32
3) Samuel Sánchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi)     00:01:10
4) Ivan Basso (Liquigas)                  00:01:29
5) Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto)            00:01:51
6) Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo-Galicia)    00:01:55
7) Joaquin Rodriguez (Caisse d'Epargne)   00:05:54
8) Paolo Tiralongo (Lampre-NGC)           00:06:35
9) Philip Deignan (Cervelo TestTeam)      00:07:49
10) Juan José Cobo (Fuji-Servetto)        00:10:46



Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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therevokid | 14 years ago

watched the highlights late last night ... stunning
and Good on ya Phil ...  1

Simon_MacMichael | 14 years ago

Last couple of KM made for great TV, fantastic win for him after what looked like a really nasty day out there.

Blackhound | 14 years ago

Great result for PD, and in top 10 overall as well! Looking like outdoing Nicholas Roche from last year as well.

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