Roche surges into sixth after fruitful day in Vuelta

Ireland’s Nicolas Roche has continued his rise up the General Classification at the Vuelta a Espana after finishing 14th on yesterday’s 164 kilometre seventh stage from Huesca to Alcañiz.

Roche is now joint sixth overall, just over a minute behind race leader Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) and on the same time as Spaniard Alejandro Valverde (Movistar).

Chris Froome (team Sky) and Alberto Contador (Team SaxoBank) had a relatively stress-free day and finished safely in the main bunch to stay second and third overall.

The race was won by German powerhouse John Degenkolb (Argos-Shimano) who took his third win of this year’s race when he outsprinted Elia Viviani (Liquigas-Cannondale) and Allan Davis (Orica-GreenEdge).

Today’s eighth stage is sure to be one for the climbers as it features several testing climbs before ramping up for four kilometres to the summit finish to the Andorran ski station of the Collada de la Gallina.

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