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Vuelta a Espana: Lopez refuses to throw in the towel

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Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana), Enric Mas(Quick-Step Floors) and Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First - Drapac) finish stage 19 at the Vuelta a Espana

Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana), Enric Mas(Quick-Step Floors) and Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First - Drapac) finish stage 19 at the Vuelta a Espana
(Image credit: Getty Images)
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 Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team) attacks the lead group during stage 4 at Tirreno-Adriatico

Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana Pro Team) attacks the lead group during stage 4 at Tirreno-Adriatico
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Nairo Quintana (Movistar) made several surges but was marked by Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana)

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) made several surges but was marked by Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Miguel Angel López (Astana Pro Team) remains on the hunt for both a podium finish and a first triumph in this year's Vuelta a España after a first stage in the Pyrenees where his attacks proved ineffective.

López and Enric Mas (Quick-Step Floors) shadowed each other closely on the final climb of La Rabassa, with Mas saying López had been sitting on his wheel throughout the ascent. And López later admitted that he had not a great day, crossing the line alongside Mas in fifth place, losing time on Steven Kruiswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) and Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and moving down a spot to fifth overall.

López argued that the searing pace laid down by Movistar had ended up draining his own strength and then, whilst he began to find his legs again, that a lack of collaboration in the chasing group behind Yates had scuppered any chance of a late move.

"It was a tough day, because we went so hard on the flat and from the moment we began to climb, I wasn't feeling great," López told Spanish sports daily MARCA. "I had a problem getting a good pace, although towards the top it went better."

"The problem was that Simon attacked really hard and nobody wanted to work behind."