Vuelta a Espana: Vine victorious as Aussie star climbs to more glory

·2-min read

Jay Vine landed a second stage win in three days at the Vuelta a Espana after a magnificent climb through mountain mist to the finish line.

The Australian made his decisive move on Saturday's stage eight with just under 6km remaining as crowds roared on his bravura move, with the Alpecin-Deceuninck rider leaving behind fellow breakaway riders.

Vine had a 25-second lead with 1.5km remaining as Spaniard Marc Soler just about stayed in touch, but the gap was 43 seconds in the end, the home challenge having faded.

The 153.4-kilometre Asturias mountain stage from Pola de Laviana contained a sting in the tail, a category one ascent to the Collau Fancuaya finish.

Having won an exacting stage from Bilbao to Pico Jano on Thursday for his first Grand Tour win, it was impressive that Vine was able to produce a repeat.

"It's incredible," said 26-year-old Vine on Eurosport. "I've got so much more confidence after that first one, I got the monkey off my back. It felt so much more natural riding in the group today and all the pressure was off me. Today was such a fun day."

He featured among a group that surged clear of the peloton and held a lead of over four minutes inside 60km, and although it later splintered Vine had plenty of company heading into the closing 10km.

His surge did the job, though, denying Soler what would have been a third Spanish victory in four days following Jesus Herrada's Friday win.

In the general classification picture, Remco Evenepoel stayed out in front, but Rudy Molard (Groupama-FDJ) slipped from second to 30th overall after a rough ride, allowing Enric Mas and Primoz Roglic to each nudge up a place to podium positions.

Vine vaults to KOM top spot

Vine's dominant ride saw him take over at the top of the King of the Mountains standings – the fourth Australian to achieve that feat after Simon Clarke, Nathan Haas and Michael Storer – following misfortune for previous leader Victor Langellotti.

Langellotti (Burgos-BH) crashed out early in the stage and was taken to hospital with a suspected fractured collarbone and concussion.

STAGE RESULT

1. Jay Vine (Alpecin-Deceuninck)
2. Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates) +0:43
3. Rein Taaramae (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) 0:43
4. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) +0:47
5. Remco Evenepoel (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) +1:20

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Remco Evenepoel (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 29:28:19
2. Enric Mas (Movistar) +0:28
3. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) +1:01

Points Classification

1. Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) 147
2. Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) 142
3. Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates) 81

King of the Mountains

1. Jay Vine (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 40
2. Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates) 16
3. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) 12