Cycling | 16 september 2018

Kruijswijk 4th in Vuelta overall, Van Poppel sprints to 4th in final stage

Steven Kruijswijk finished fourth in the Vuelta a España. The final stage to Madrid ended as expected in a bunch sprint. Danny van Poppel started the sprint early and also finished in fourth place.

"I really would have liked to win the stage, but I just came short again," Van Poppel said. "I was positioned in Viviani's lead-out but maybe I went a bit too early. When they slowed down, I started my sprint. But it just wasn't meant to be. 

"I now have done two Grand Tours in one year and it is getting better and better. I am convinced that that stage win will come soon."

Team LottoNL-Jumbo captain Steven Kruijswijk is the first Dutchman in history to finish in the top five of all the three Grand Tours. 

"It was three tough weeks. I am very happy with my performance, although it is a pity that I just didn't make it on the overall podium. But you have to be honest, the others were just better over three weeks. I have to be at peace with that. 

"All in all, I can certainly be proud of my fifth place in the Tour and my fourth place in the Vuelta. It is a reward for all the work that I and also the team have put into it. With a podium place everything was more tangible. "

Sports Director Grischa Niermann is proud on his team. "Fourth is a good result for us. Unfortunately, we didn't win a stage, although Danny was close to it a few times. The goal was to go for a good classification with Stevie and George and in that we were partly successful. Yesterday was a little disappointing, but we knew that there was a possibility that Steven wouldn't end up on the podium. Regardless, he has proven this year that he is one of the best stage race riders, also with a fifth place in the Tour. That is really impressive and he has not reached his best yet. 

"As a team we have achieved a good level and have been fighting to the very end. And this was the maximum achievable. With what we have shown this year in the Grand Tours, I'm sure that a podium is only a matter of time. "