Sam Bennett comes home second in Toledo as Roglic keeps lead

Irish rider moves second on points classification after stage 19 of Vuelta

Sam Bennett clocked up another impressive finish at the Vuelta a España on Friday, taking second on stage 19 to Toledo. The Bora-hansgrohe rider was quickest of the peloton on the uphill finish, but was outmanoeuvred by the Deceuninck-QuickStep team, which had breakaway rider Rémi Cavagna out front.

Although the peloton gradually reduced Cavagna’s lead, he had a sufficient buffer to reach the line alone. Bennett put in an impressive finish on the uphill rise to the line, but was still five seconds behind and had to be content with what is his third runner-up slot at the race.

He had been trying to land what would have been his third stage win, but will have to wait until Sunday’s final stage to Madrid for his next opportunity. However, his strong showing saw him rise again to second overall in the points classification, albeit 29 points adrift of the leader Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma).

Roglic had a nervous day, crashing in the wet with 65 kilometres remaining. The Movistar Team of the rider in second overall, Alejandro Valverde, disregarded the long-held tradition of not attacking the race leader when he was delayed by crashes or other misfortune, driving the pace to try to distance Roglic. Things eventually came back together and Roglic finished in the main bunch on the stage and maintains his two minute 50 second lead ahead of Valverde.


Unless there is a major upset on Saturday’s final mountain stage, he looks almost certain to win his first Grand Tour in Madrid on Sunday. As for Bennett, his whole focus is on being first to the line in Madrid.


Stage 18 Avila to Toledo: 1 Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck-QuickStep) 165.2 kilometres in 3 hours 43 mins 34 secs, 2 S Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) at 5 secs, 3 Z Stybar (Deceuninck-QuickStep), 4 P Gilbert (Deceuninck-QuickStep), 5 A Valverde (Movistar Team), 6 T Van Der Sande (Lotto Soudal) all same time

Teams: 1 Deceuninck-QuickStep 11 hours 10 mins 52 secs, 2 Movistar Team at 5 secs, 3 AG2R La Mondiale same time. Other: 15 Bora-Hansgrohe at 3 mins 33 secs

General classification: 1 Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma 75 hours 33 secs, 2 A Valverde (Movistar Team at 2 mins 50 secs, 3 N Quintana (Movistar Team at 3 mins 31 secs, 4 M Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team at 4 mins 17 secs, 5 T Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates at 4 mins 49 secs, 6 R Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe at 7 mins 46 secs. Irish: 136 S Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) at 4 hours 4 mins 47 secs

Points classification: 1 Primoz Roglic (Team Jumbo-Visma) 143, 2 S Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) 114, 3 A Valverde (Movistar Team) 110

Mountains classification: 1 Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R La Mondiale) 76, 2 A Madrazo Ruiz (Burgos-BH) 44, 3 T Geoghegan Hart (Team Ineos) 35

Young Riders classification: 1 Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team) 75 hours 4 mins 50 secs, 2 T Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) at 32 secs, 3 J Knox (Deceuninck-QuickStep) at 9 mins 6 secs

Teams classification: 1 Movistar 224 hours 4 mins 57 secs, 2 Astana Pro Team at 47 mins, 3 Team Jumbo-Visma at 1 hours 35 mins 5 secs. Other: 13 Bora-Hansgrohe at 3 hours 49 mins 6 secs


Stage 7 Warwick to Burton Dassett County Park: 1 Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus) 188.7 kilometres in 4 hours 7 mins 49 secs, 2 M Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) at 1 secs, 3 S Clarke (EF Education First) at 3 secs, 4 D Cimolai (Israel Cycling Academy), 5 T Benoot (Lotto Soudal), 6 J De Buyst (Lotto Soudal) all same time

Irish: 63 E Dunbar (Team Ineos) at 5 mins 28 secs, 72 C Dunne (Israel Cycling Academy) at 5 mins 43 secs, 94 R Townsend (Canyon dhb/Bloor Homes) at 11 mins

General classification after stage 7: 1 Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus) 25 hours 58 mins 25 secs, 2 M Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) at 12 secs, 3 J De Buyst (Lotto Soudal) at 40 secs, 4 P Sivakov (Team Ineos) at 42 secs, 5 N Politt (Katusha-Alpecin) at 51 secs, 6 G Moscon (Team Ineos) same time

Irish: 57 E Dunbar (Team Ineos) at 21 mins 12 secs, 67 C Dunne (Israel Cycling Academy) at 26 mins 19 secs, 97 R Townsend (Canyon dhb/Bloor Homes) at 38 mins 31 secs

Mountains classification: 1 Jacob Scott (SwiftCarbon Pro Cycling) 59, 2 D van Baarle (Team Ineos) 34, 3 D de Bondt (Corendon-Circus) 32

Irish: 5 E Dunbar (Team Ineos) 17

Shane Stokes

Shane Stokes

Shane Stokes is a contributor to The Irish Times writing about cycling