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Dublin: 7°C Monday 12 April 2021

Two Irish riders put in encouraging performances at stage two of the Vuelta

Colombian Esteban Chaves claimed first place as Tour de France champion Chris Froome lost four seconds to Nairo Quintana.

Team Sky's Nicolas Roche came third yesterday (file pic).
Team Sky's Nicolas Roche came third yesterday (file pic).
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

Updated at 07.50

IRISH CYCLISTS NICOLAS Roche and Dan Martin impressed at stage two of Spain’s Vuelta, finishing third and fourth respectively.

The pair are now third and fourth overall to boot, following yesterday’s encouraging display.

Colombian Esteban Chaves claimed first place as Tour de France champion Chris Froome lost four seconds to Nairo Quintana on Sunday.

Chaves edged out Dutchman Tom Dumoulin in a sprint finish to the 158.7km ride from Alhaurin de la Torre to Caminito del Rey in a time of 3hr 57min 15sec ahead of Roche in third.

“It is my first win in a three-week tour. It’s incredible,” said Chaves.

“I hope to hold onto the red jersey (the overall leader) for as long as possible.”

Froome is attempting to become only the third man to win the Tour de France and the Vuelta in the same year.

However, it was Quintana who took an early lead in the battle for the general classification victory as he came in one place ahead of Froome in sixth just 36 seconds behind the leaders.

“I tried to go from far out. It was a climb for explosive riders, I tried but the heat affected me,” said Quintana.

“I saw that Chaves was stronger than those of us in the breakaway, he is a very smart rider and I am happy that one of my compatriots won.”

Meanwhile, three-time Grand Tour winner Vincenzo Nibali was disqualified, race organisers confirmed on Sunday for being towed by his Astana team car during the second stage.

Television footage emerged soon after the end of the stage showing Nibali accelerating rapidly alongside his team car as he attempted to make it back towards the peloton after being caught up in a crash 30 kilometres from the finish line.

BMC enjoyed victory on a neutralised team time trial over safety concerns on Saturday, but their leader Tejay Van Garderen, who failed to finish the Tour de France, also lost time on the general classification favourites by finishing 55 seconds behind in 15th.

Overall standings:

1. Esteban Chaves (COL/ORI) 3hr 57min 15sec, 2. Tom Dumoulin (NED/GIA) at 0:05sec, 3. Nicolas Roche (IRL/SKY) 0:15, 4. Daniel Martin (IRL/CAN) 0:24, 5. Joaquin Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) 0:35, 6. Nairo Quintana (COL/MOV) 0:36, 7. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/MOV) 0:39, 8. Chris Froome (GBR/SKY) 0:40, 9. Daniel Moreno (ESP/KAT) 0:41, 10. Fabio Aru (ITA/AST).

Additional reporting by Paul Fennessy

© AFP, 2015

Originally published Sunday at 8.03pm

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