While his Quick-Step teammate Gert Steegmans was winning in Portugal, Tom Boonen was making his fifth trip to the top step of the podium this year - this time at Stage 4 of the Vuelta Andalucia. Boonen beat out Italian Danilo Napolitano of the Lampre Team and Spaniard Oscar Freire of the Rabobank Team at the end of a 179.5 km day.
"This is the first sprint that I have taken part in this week and I won it," Boonen said. "Over the past days, a few things stopped me taking part in the final sprints--first of all due to a puncture during the final, then a few stomach problems during yesterday's stage. It appears that the small problem with my back is getting better. Normally I'm not that fond of low-speed sprints like today's. I prefer faster sprints. Winning a sprint with the characteristics of today's confirms that I am in excellent form.
"Napolitano launched the sprint and Freire and I followed closely. I caught-up with and overtook him going on to win the race. I am very pleased."
The 53rd Vuelta Andalucia finishes Thursday with the fifth stage from Ecija to Antequera. To see full results from Wednesday's stage, click here.