Vuelta a Espana: Stage 5 finish line quotes

Meersman nets second stage win

Gianni Meersman (Etixx-Quickstep) - Vuelta a Espana stage 5 winner

"I was extremely happy with the first victory and it gave me a lot of confidence. I started today with zero stress, everything was good but the leadout that Stybar did was incredible and then I saw the sign for 200 and I knew that if I didn't start then the other guys would come from behind. I would rather do my own sprint and then they pass me then get boxed in. In the end, they didn't pass me.

"It was quite nervous, I think that some places behind me there was a crash. I hope the guys that crashed are ok."

Zdenek Stybar (Etixx-Quickstep)

"In the breakaway there was just two guys but still Machado was going really fast. You could see that the bunch was lined out for most of the time and for maybe the last 60km Martin Velits was also pulling very hard. Then we closed it to just over a minute and it was getting really chaotic with all the turns and there were some crashes. We managed and it was a strong sprint and we can celebrate again."

Were you worried about some of the attacks?

"Yes of course, there were some very strong riders. We expected that they would go but the pace from the bunch was still very high and we just gave everything that we had to close it down and bring Gianni first over the line."

Fabio Felline (Trek-Segafredo) - second on the stage

"It was a difficult finish but when Gilbert and Clarke went we had to pick up the pace. It made it a little more complicated. We had to get to the front very quickly and that's what I did and in the end it was about positioning and getting my sprint right."

Steven De Jongh (Tinkoff directeur)

"We don't know a lot at this point in time. We know that he [Robert Kiserlovski] has hurt some of his teeth so he was complaining about that and his collarbone. We thought that his collarbone might be broken but we couldn't see it. He finish, we will take an x-ray now and we will see how it is."

Alberto Contador (Tinkoff)

"The key today was to stay safe in the final kilometres - we are here to give our best and fight for the GC. It was risky and I have to praise the extraordinary job of the squad, Bennati was incredible.

"I ticked off another day and it is now important to recover. Let's cross our fingers and hope Kiserlovski didn't suffer anything serious. In a transition day one would expect a calmer stage but this isn't the case. We now battle for a second as if it were one minute.

"I still can't draw any conclusion on my form and we have to think ahead. The Vuelta is long and far from over."

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