Vuelta a Espana: Chaves holds fourth overall

Colombian praises team after hot and challenging day

Following a second summit finish in as many days at the Vuelta a EspanaEsteban Chaves holds onto fourth place overall with the 26-year-old praising his Orica-BikeExchange teammates for their work on the fourth stage to San André de Teixidó, won by Direct Energie's Lillian Camlejane.

With stage 5 suited to the fast men or a potential breakaway, Chaves and his rivals for the overall jersey should expect a more relaxed day. 

"The team were fantastic again today," said Chaves after his 21st place. "The big guys on the flat and then the climbers on the ascents, our team is really strong and we rode very well to stay in a good position in the race."

Compatriot Darwin Atapuma (BMC) finished second on the stage to claim the leader's jersey and become the seventh Colombian to lead the Vuelta a Espana. He becomes the fourth rider in as many stages to lead the race after Movistar's Ruben Fernandez dropped from first to seventh despite the team's effort to hold the lead.

"Movistar were pulling pretty hard and we matched everything on the final climb. Simon Yates stayed with me for a long way up the climb and it's these small details that are really important and I am very grateful for," Chaves added.

Sports director Neil Stephens added that considering the difficulty of the finale, the day played out to the team's advantage thanks to a full team effort.

"We definitely ticked all the boxes today. Once the breakaway went clear it allowed us to sit back a little and try to conserve as much energy as possible for the finale," Stephens said. "The team did a great job and rode with intelligence throughout. When we called upon the guys to get on the front and reduce the deficit a bit with 15kilometres to go they were ready and brought the bunch onto the climb."

Stephens added that tomorrow is far from a straight forward affair but doesn't expect it to be as challenging as the last two GC days.

"Tomorrow could be an interesting stage due to the long climb in the middle, it could easily be a day for the breakaway again," he said.

Vuelta a Espana - Stage 4 Video Highlights

Related Articles

Back to top