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Dublin: 1°C Friday 4 December 2020
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Vuelta victory for Dan Martin as tearful Irishman claims stage three

‘This one’s for the wife,’ he said after moving to within five seconds of race leader Primoz Roglic.

Dan Martin holds off Primoz Roglic in a sprint to the line.
Dan Martin holds off Primoz Roglic in a sprint to the line.
Image: Alvaro Barrientos

IRELAND’S DAN MARTIN won a thrilling battle for stage three honours on the Vuelta a Espana today, and now trails race leader Primoz Roglic by just five seconds.

As a select group sprinted for the line atop a steep climb, veteran Martin put in a concerted bid to outsprint Roglic and Richard Carapaz, who was third on the stage and is also third overall.

“This one’s for the wife,” said a tearful Martin at the hilltop finish. “It’s my first win since I joined the new team too,” said the Israel Start Up Nation captain who will be joined next season by Chris Froome.

The newly formed Israeli team recently won a stage on the Giro d’Italia, with England’s Alex Dowsett on stage eight.

Two-time Vuelta winner Froome fell off the pace on the final 8km climb around halfway up and is already some 30 minutes off the pace on the 18-stage Vuelta.

There was little wind as the race went through the Rioja wine region before traversing a vast, bleak almost treeless plateau.

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The 166km run form Lososa to Laguna Negra may have been a sign of things to come weather-wise, as riders all wore jackets in the run through pine forests and misty rain ahead of the final climb.

Colombia’s Esteban Chaves dropped from fourth overnight to eighth, 1min 29sec down, after a puncture with just a couple of kilometres to race. 

© – AFP, 2020

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