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Cycling: Astana captain 2nd at Vuelta of Spain

17 september 2013, 13:23
0
Christopher Horner. ©AFP
Christopher Horner. ©AFP
Vincenzo Nibali. ©AFP
Vincenzo Nibali. ©AFP
The captain of Kazakhstan cycling team Astana Vincenzo Nibali from Italy has become second at the prestigious super cycling marathon race Vuelta of Spain, Vesti.kz reports.

American Christopher Horner won the 68th Vuelta race. The 41-y.o. veteran accomplished the biggest victory of his career, becoming the first American to win the Spanish Vuelta and the oldest champion of one of cycling's three-week grand tours -- he was 41 years and 327 days old when the won the race.

“I have faced younger and great riders like Nibali, Valverde and Joaquim Rodriguez. They have had a great tour so for me it is a legendary moment that may not be repeated,” Horner said after the race in Spain.

The RadioShack cyclist finished 37 seconds ahead of Italian Vincenzo Nibali caped for Kazakhstan after the last of 21 stages. Spaniard Alejandro Valverde of Movistar finished third.

Valverde won the race in 2009, Nibali won the Vuelta in 2010. This year he was aiming to become the fourth rider to win the Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a Espana in the same year.

"I think I have competed well from the first stage. It was a very difficult tour but I think I honored the red jersey. It is possible that on Formigal I underestimated Horner and he gained some seconds there. I can't complain with how my year has gone. I won the Giro and I came here with the intention to win again in the Tour of Spain. I gave everything I had to wear the red jersey and defend it, but perhaps our strategy wasn't correct," Nibali said to Bicycling.com.

Kazakhstan's Astana cycling team won the opening team time trial of the super cycling marathon Vuelta and rode the 27.4km stage from Vilanova de Arousa to Sanxenxo in 29 minutes 59 seconds.

The 2013 Vuelta a España started in Galicia on August 24. It ran during five days through Galicia, then continued anticlockwise touring Spain through Castilla y Leon, Extremadura, Andalucia, Aragon, Catalonia, La Rioja, Cantabria, and Asturias, before returning to Madrid for the closing on September 15. This year the race included both team and individual distances, and also several mounting stages. The racers covered the total distance of more than 300 thousand kilometers.

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