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“Awesome. After 20 stages I can stay with the group of favourites. I am really happy and for sure the team is really happy. This is the work we have done with the team."

Photo: Sirotti

ESTEBAN CHAVES

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NEWS

MITCHELTON-SCOTT

TEAM PROFILE
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VUELTA A ESPAÑA

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NEWS
12.09.2015 @ 19:25 Posted by Andy Pedersen

Colombian Esteban Chaves has put in a phenomenal ride on the penultimate stage and final mountain challenge of the 2015 Vuelta a Espana to jump into the top five overall.

 

Chaves survived with an elite group of riders as Astana Pro Team attacked the final two climbs with vigor to drop race leader Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) and all but hand their leader Fabio Aru the Tour win.

 

As the group took a right hand turn into the final 200m of the 175.8km stage, Chaves had enough in the tank to attack the group and take a few extra seconds. Dumoulin and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) finished 3:55minutes behind the 25-year-old to see the two-time 2015 stage winner take over fifth place on general classification.

 

“Awesome,” Chaves said. “After 20 stages I can stay with the group of favourites. I am really happy and for sure the team is really happy. This is the work we have done with the team. Two years ago the team put their faith in me, and this is the reward.

 

“The goal for this Vuelta was top ten and now we are top five. Plus three stages and six days in the red jersey, this is an amazing Vuelta for Orica-GreenEDGE.”

 

Sport director Neil Stephens put the success down to another tactically sound day of racing.

 

“It was another fantastic tactical race by the team and by Esteban,” Stephens said. “Esteban got to the top of the third climb and realised that Valverde was in trouble so he stayed with the favourites. When he noticed Dumoulin was fading also, he saw the major move and he had to get across to it.

 

"It wasn’t until the last 15km that we realised we could maybe pass Dumoulin on the general classification and that’s when we really collaborated with the Astana team."

 

At the start of the tough day, which featured four category one climbs, Stephens said the team’s focus was on maintaining their seventh position.

 

“Three weeks ago we set the challenging goal of a top ten position at this year’s Vuelta,” Stephens said. “We went into the second last day working to maintain what we had and see what happens. Who would have thought we would jump two places to a top five."

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