SAN MIGUEL DE ARALAR, Spain, Sept 03, 2014 (AFP) – Italy’s Fabio Aru
confirmed the huge impression he made in this year’s Tour of Italy as he won
the 11th stage of the Tour of Spain on Wednesday, a 153.4 kilometres ride from
The 24-year-old – third in the Giro – moved up to seventh in the overall
standings in the season’s last Grand Tour, though, 2min 13sec behind overall
leader Alberto Contador of Spain.
Contador’s chances of winning his third Tour of Spain title increased
markedly as Colombia’s Tour of Italy champion Nairo Quintana’s campaign ended
in dramatic fashion as he broke a bone in his right shoulder in what was his
second crash in as many days.
For Aru though there were only tears of joy at the end of the gruelling
“It’s unbelievable,” said Aru, who was winning his second stage on a Grand
“I am very pleased. It is fabulous for me and for the team who have all
worked so hard to get this to happen.
“I don’t think it is feasible for me to win the overall title, though, I
hope I can repeat this stage victory.”
Contador, who took over the lead after Tuesday’s stage displacing Quintana,
came in fourth in the stage itself just ahead of Britain’s 2013 Tour de France
winner Chris Froome.
Contador, winner in 2008 and 2012, holds a 20sec lead over compatriot
Alejandro Valverde, who was second on the stage, while Froome is in fourth,
1min 21sec in arrears.
“I have many potential rivals still in the hunt so I have to look after my
race and not try and sit back and watch what they are doing,” said the
“It is going to be difficult for me to stay in the lead till the end but I
feel good and my performance in the time-trial on Tuesday was a real
confidence booster,” he added.
Quintana’s chances of adding the Tour of Spain title to his Tour of Italy
crown evaporated early on the stage and he will undergo an operation on
Contador, who himself failed to finish the Tour de France after he broke
his tibia in the early stages, said he felt sorry for Quintana.
“I am sad for him because he really prepared hard for this race,” said
“I know what it’s like when all your preparations are undermined by a
Thursday’s 12th stage will come as a relief to the sprinters, who have had
a tough past couple of days first with the time-trial and then with this tough
mountain stage, as it is a flat picturesque 166.4km ride amongst the vineyards
beginning and finishing in Logrono, the winemaking centre of Spain.
from the Tour of Spain 11th stage, a 153.4km ride from Pamplona to San Miguel
de Aralar on Wednesday:
1. Fabio Aru (ITA/AST) 3hr 41min 03sec, 2. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/MOV) at
0:06sec, 3. Joaquin Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) 0:06, 4. Alberto Contador (ESP/TIN)
0:06, 5. Chris Froome (GBR/SKY) 0:06, 6. Rigoberto Uran (COL/OPQ) 0:13, 7.
Samuel Sanchez (ESP/BMC) 0:15, 8. Daniel Martin (IRL/GRM) 0:15, 9. Daniel
Navarro (ESP/COF) 0:16, 10. Robert Gesink (NED/BKN) 0:21, 11. Daniel Moreno
(ESP/KAT) 0:25, 12. Warren Barguil (FRA/GIA) 0:49, 13. Damiano Caruso
(ITA/CAN) 0:56, 14. Winner Anacona (COL/LAM) 1:14, 15. Sergio Pardilla
1. Alberto Contador (ESP/TIN) 40hr 26min 56sec, 2. Alejandro Valverde
(ESP/MOV) at 0:20, 3. Rigoberto Uran (COL/OPQ) 1:08, 4. Chris Froome (GBR/SKY)
5. Joaquin Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) 1:35, 6. Samuel Sanchez (ESP/BMC) 1:52, 7.
Fabio Aru (ITA/AST) 2:13, 8. Winner Anacona (COL/LAM) 2:22, 9. Robert Gesink
(NED/BKN) 2:55, 10. Damiano Caruso (ITA/CAN) 3:51, 11. Daniel Martin (IRL/GRM)
3:59, 12. Daniel Navarro (ESP/COF) 4:26, 13. Warren Barguil (FRA/GIA) 4:56,
14. Wilco Kelderman (NED/BKN) 5:00, 15. Daniel Moreno (ESP/KAT) 6:10