Cycling | 8 september 2016
Team LottoNL-Jumbo eases through Vuelta's 18th stage
After several stages of lighting up the front end of the Vuelta a España, the LottoNL-Jumbo men enjoyed a quiet 18th stage to Gandia. Magnus Cort Nilsen (Orica) won the stage ahead of Nikias Arndt (Giant) and Jean-Pierre Drucker (BMC) in a sprint. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) remained the overall lead.
"The stage went well for us, we had no ambition to jump on a day like today,” said Sports Director Addy Engels. “You can sit in the front group, get in the break, but it’s good for nothing – this was a clear sprint stage. We decided to stay in the group together and support each other.
"Stages like today can be relatively easy, so our men can save a little for the coming days. Campenaerts is looking forward to tomorrow, Bennett and Gesink know that Saturday it can happen for them.
"Tankink is still recovering from yesterday and it is important for Keizer and Bouwman to rest and think of Madrid on Sunday."
On the roads towards Gandia, the wind blew properly. "It surprised me that Etixx tried to make some echelons. It was a small part of the race and it was still a long way to the finish, but it did not cause problems in the peloton. Bennett survived well in the first group."
The Vuelta programmed a 37-kilometre time trial for tomorrow in Calpe. "Victor Campenaerts can not wait to start tomorrow, before we go to the hotel, we are going to see a bit of it in the car. The stage will not surprise many because they come here to train in the winter.”
“It will be the first time for Campenaerts to race a time trial in a grand tour, so we want to see what he can do. He is motivated, at least for tomorrow."