David Arroyo (Caisse d'Epargne) shows the strain of tackling the 25-kilometre climb to the finish.
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Last year's Subida Urkiola winner fourth
David Arroyo failed to repeat victory in the Subida Urkiola Sunday, but says he felt in good condition after the Tour de France and ahead of the Vuelta a Burgos.
"It was important that the finish left a good taste in my mouth," said Arroyo. "I am looking forward to the Tour of Burgos."
Arroyo won the one-day Subida Urkiola last year, ahead of Juan José Cobo and Sergio Pardilla. He went on to win stage 19 of the Vuelta a España in Segovia after a two-man escape in the last 50 kilometres.
This year, Arroyo raced the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France three-week races. He helped his Caisse d'Epargne team win stage eight of the Tour with Luis León Sánchez.
Arroyo had his chance to win yesterday in the 160.4-kilometre race that ends on the Urkiola climb in Spain's Basque region.
"It was a controlled race up until the bottom of the last climb to Urkiola, where the attacks started," said Arroyo. "I felt good and stayed near the front up until 1500 metres, when Igor Antón attacked."
Antón won the race ahead of Xavier Tondo (Andalucía-Cajasur) and Freddy Montaña (Boyaca). Arroyo finished fourth.
He will race for the first time in Spain's Vuelta a Burgos five-day race starting on Wednesday. His Caisse d'Epargne teammate, Xabier Zandio, won last year.
Zandio and Arroyo will be in the team with Alejandro Valverde, José Vicente Garcia, Vasil Kiryienka, Francisco Pérez, Joaquím Rodríguez and Rigoberto Uran.