Ruta del Sol 2017: Valverde takes 1st stage and leaders jersey

alejandro valverde 2017 - Ruta del Sol 2017: Valverde takes 1st stage and leaders jerseyAt 155 kilometres, stage 1 in the Ruta del Sol takes in five climbs. The last one is crested with 18 kilometres to go and it's there the race ignites. Eventually six riders sprint for the win in Granada. Valverde bests Poels, while Reichenbach finishes in third. Valverde is the first overall leader. (Slideshow route/profile)

Results 1st stage Ruta del Sol

1. Alejandro Valverde (spa)
2. Wout Poels (nld) s.t.
3. Sebastien Reichenbach (swi) s.t.
4. Diego Rosa (ita) s.t.
5. Ion Izagirre (spa) s.t.
6. Alberto Contador (spa) s.t.
7. Thibaut Pinot (fra) + 0.05
8. Mikel Landa (spa) s.t.
9. Rigoberto Uran (col) s.t.
10. Warren Barguil (fra) s.t.

GC after the 1st stage
1. Alejandro Valverde (spa)
2. Wout Poels (nld) s.t.
3. Sebastien Reichenbach (swi) s.t.
4. Diego Rosa (ita) s.t.
5. Ion Izagirre (spa) s.t.
6. Alberto Contador (spa) s.t.
7. Thibaut Pinot (fra) + 0.05
8. Mikel Landa (spa) s.t.
9. Rigoberto Uran (col) s.t.
10. Warren Barguil (fra) s.t.

Race report
With 14 kms done De Vries, Preidler, Turek, Senechal, Van der Sande and Sveshnikov break away. After a long chase Salas joins the leaders on the lower slopes of the first climb. Their lead is around 5 minutes.

Close to the top of the Zafarraya Preidler heads out on his own, but on the Alhama de Granada ascent, which is the third climb of the day, the seven escapees re-group. They power on, yet with 36 kms to go Turek, Van der Sande and Senechal are the last escapees to be reeled in.

The pace is high on the last climb of today, the Puerto de Monachil. One rider after the other is droped until Contador heads out on his own 6 kilometres before the top. The only rider able to jump to his wheel is Valverde. A little later Poels, Rosa, Uran and Izaguirre hook up, while a group with Pinot and Reichenbach is next to bridge over.

Just before the top Valverde and Contador escape and the two top-favourites are the first to plunge down. Valverde is faster and he takes the lead, yet Contador, Rosa and Izagirre re-join him later on. Poels and Reichenbach are the first chasers and they hook up with 3 kms remaining.

The race boils down to a sprint in the streets of Granada. Valverde is in a class of hos own with Poels finishes in second as the best of the rest.

Promising start of the Ruta del Sol! Tomorrow brings the Queen Stage…

Ruta del Sol 2017 stage 1: Route maps, height profiles, and more

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Alejandro Valverde


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