Roglic set for Vuelta a Espana victory as fellow Slovenian Pogacar wins stage 20

Primoz Roglic celebrates on the podium after stage 20 of the Vuelta a Espana

Primoz Roglic crossed the line fifth to preserve his lead going into tomorrow’s processional final stage

Primoz Roglic is set to become Slovenia’s first Grand Tour winner after retaining his overall lead following the penultimate stage of Vuelta a Espana.

His compatriot Tadej Pogacar, still only 20 and riding his first Grand Tour, claimed his third stage win on a memorable day for Slovenian cycling.

Tradition dictates Roglic will not be attacked on Sunday’s final stage.

Alejandro Valverde will finish runner-up after coming second on Saturday.

Pogacar secured the leader’s jersey in the young rider classification as well as moving up to third in the overall standings after a stunning 30km solo attack.

The UAE Team Emirates rider crested the Puerto de Pena Negra climb alone and continued to extend his lead on the descent.

On the final Plataforma de Gredos climb he easily held off his pursuers, finishing one minute and 32 seconds ahead of Valverde, and climbing from fifth to third overall in the process.

Britain’s James Knox, who was nursing an injury after being caught in Friday’s big crash, slipped from ninth to 11th overall after finishing more than 11 minutes behind the winner on Saturday.

Vuelta a Espana – stage 20 result

1 Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) 5hrs 16mins 40secs

2 Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar Team) +1min 32secs

3 Rafal Majka (Pol/Bora-Hansgrohe) Same time

4 Hermann Pernsteiner (Aut/Bahrain-Merida)

5 Primoz Roglic (Slo/Team Jumbo-Visma) +1min 41secs

6 Sergio Andres Higuita Garcia (Col/EF Education First) +1min 49secs

7 Dylan Teuns (Bel/Bahrain-Merida) Same time

8 Nairo Quintana (Col/Movistar Team) +1min 56secs

9 Mikel Nieve (Spa/Mitchelton-Scott) +1min 59secs

10 Wilco Kelderman (Ned/Team Sunweb) Same time

Overall classification

1 Primoz Roglic (Slo/Team Jumbo-Visma) 80 hrs 18mins 54secs

2 Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar Team) +2mins 33secs

3 Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) + 2mins 55secs

4 Nairo Quintana (Col/Movistar Team) +3mins 46secs

5 Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana Pro Team) +4mins 48secs

6 Rafal Majka (Pol/Bora-Hansgrohe) +7mins 33secs

7 Wilco Kelderman (Ned/Team Sunweb) +10mins 4secs

8 Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor/Lotto Soudal) +12mins 54secs

9 Marc Soler (Spa/Movistar Team) +22mins 27secs

10 Mikel Nieve (Spa/Mitchelton-Scott) +22mins 34secs

11 James Knox (GB/Deceuninck – Quick Step) +22mins 55secs

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/49702966

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