It was a day in the Vuelta a España tailor-made for the Classics specialists, and it took a pair to foil sprinter Sam Bennett in a tense finale in Guadalajara on stage 17. A late attack by Zdenek Stybar set up what looked like a sure win for the Irish champion, but instead it turned into an episode of 'Punked' - with Philippe Gilbert mowing Bennett down in the uphill finale.
The Deceuninck-QuickStep team showed that they are the best in the business when it comes to long, hard, windy stages by putting seven riders in the move with only sprint lead-out man Max Richeze sitting out the 40-man breakaway.
When it came to the crux moment, the twisting uphill sprint finish, Stybar jumped to force Bennett's hand and set up Gilbert perfectly.
Nairo Quintana (Movistar) profited most from his day in the move, subtracting 5:19 from his deficit to race leader Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) and moving into second place overall ahead of his teammate Alejandro Valverde.
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