Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) is back in the white jersey of Combination Classification leader.
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Bola del Mundo signals the end of hostilities
Peter Velits (HTC-Columbia) - eighth on stage, third overall @ 3:02: "When Rodriguez attacked, it was the steepest part of the climb, so it was the hardest for me. I suffered a lot but it was worth it. I'm so happy to finish third in the Vuelta. I couldn't have expected anything better at the start in Sevilla."
Joaquin Rodriguez (Katusha) - third on stage, fourth overall @ 4:20: "This is a good Vuelta for me. To finish fourth with a stage win is positive.
"I would have liked to lose less time against the clock but I did my best to gain more time in the mountains considering how much I normally lose in time trialling so it's OK. I finish as tired as I could be, so I'm happy."
Fränk Schleck (Saxo Bank) - fourth on stage, fifth overall @ 4:43: "I'm quite satisfied with my Vuelta at the end of the day. Today I did everything I could. I took the initiative but it wasn't a climb for me."
Saxo Bank directeur sportif Bradley McGee: "What a spectacle, this stage up to Bola del Mundo! It's been a fantastic fight. I've appreciated the work done by the six riders left in our team.
"We've taken care of some misbehaving during this race. I'm still waiting for a decent explanation for Fabian Cancellara's withdrawal. But Fränk Schleck's fifth place at the end is pretty good. I've enjoyed the Vuelta a lot.
"The course was great and the actors have been great too. I'm looking forward to come back next year. It should be with a Spanish leader [Alberto Contador] in our team if everything goes according to plan."
Xavier Tondo (Cervélo TestTeam) - fifth on stage, sixth overall @ 4:52: "I felt really good. It's too bad about two days in Asturias, I didn't feel good, but today the good feeling came back. The team was really good and we were fighting for a good GC. Everyone could see that we were fighting like a team. I think we showed everyone that we race like a team.
"This is my first big tour without problems, either crashes or sickness; now I have shown that I can do big tours. Tomorrow we can start to think about the future. I hope that my body starts to learn more about these big tours. This year, there were two days bad, maybe next year, one day bad, and then one day, I can fight for overall victory."
Nicolas Roche (AG2R-La Mondiale) - sixth on stage, seventh overall @ 5:03: "The outcome corresponds to what I was aiming for. I've improved a lot but I can see that I still have a lot to improve.
"We had a bad team time trial, I've had a bad individual time trial and I found climbing to Andorra difficult. The most encouraging aspect of my final result is that I haven't benefited from any breakaway. I've been fighting all the time with the best riders in the hills. It makes it super encouraging for the future.
"My teammates have also taken the habit of working for me now. Ag2r-La Mondiale used to be more of a team going for breakaways. This time it's been a team effort to not lose positions on GC. It's a nice performance. It makes me believe that I'll be able to fight for the podium in a Grand Tour sometime."
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