A close-fought Vuelta a España got even more frantic on a twisting finish on Saturday to Sabiñánigo, where Dan Martin (Israel Start-Up Nation) was the victim of a strange uphill crash in the final kilometre of the 184km stage 5.
Two minutes after Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) won the stage from the three-man breakaway, Martin came down when race leader Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) attacked on the inside of a right-hand bend on the run-in to the line and accidentally swept the front wheel of Jose Joaquín Rojas (Movistar), sending the Spaniard to the ground.
"I'm fine - I was a bit frustrated because I think I could have done a good stage result," Martin said. "It was a silly little crash - I got hit from behind - I was completely stopped.
"I'm a little sore from where the guy hit me but I'm fine. I think the Movistar guy crashed on the corner, I don't know why. I saw the crash, I stopped, and the guys behind kept riding full gas and hit me."
Martin, the winner of stage 3 to La Laguna Negra de Vinuesa, ended up underneath the bike of Gorka Izagirre (Astana) and took awhile to get untangled.
Roglič appeared to gain a few seconds over his rivals in the sprint but, once the race officials - after much delay - sorted out the time gaps, they gave Martin the same time as Roglič, 2:13 down on Wellens, because the crash happened inside the final 3km.
Since Roglič missed out on gaining any time bonuses, Martin kept his second place in the overall standings at five seconds, while Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers) remains third at 13 seconds.
"Hopefully I will have good legs again tomorrow and we'll try and conserve this place on GC until the rest day," Martin said.
In de laatste kilometer nog een valpartij in het peloton, onder meer Daniel Martin ligt erbij. pic.twitter.com/V3NA0L9prwOctober 24, 2020
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