The Frenchman was one of the 11 riders to make it into the stage 13 breakaway which was swallowed up before Dani Navarro (Cofidis) attacked to win the stage alone in Obregón
"It's been a while since I made a break away in a bike race," he said after the stage. "It feels good. We didn't make it to the finish but I enjoyed it."
The spring classics specialists added that he is enjoying being back at a grand tour and is hoping the his appearance at the Spanish race will be beneficial for next season.
"This is my first Grand Tour since 2010," he said. "I want to finish it to gain power for the spring classics next year. I feel better and better at the Vuelta. I won't need to race too much before my goals in April."
The 28-year-old is in his first year of a multi-year contract with Ag2r-La Mondiale having turned pro with Bouygues Telecom in 2008. He spent the last three seasons with Team Europcar.