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"Anyway I am satisfied with the result - I feel the progress of my shape coming along, even comparing with how it was in Paris - Nice. My next aim is Tour de Romandie, where I hope to be better," Spilak says

Photo: Katusha / Tim de Waele

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12.04.2014 @ 20:44 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

For the second year in a row, Simon Spilak finished 4th in the Vuelta al Pais Vasco as he moved far up the GC after doing in excellent final time trial. The Slovenian was disappointed to miss the podium by just 3 seconds and now sets his sights on the Tour de Romandie.

 

Two riders of Team Katusha, Simon Špilak and Iurii Trofimov, finished in the Top10 of the final general classification of the prestigious stage race Vuelta Ciclista al País Vasco, which ended today in Spain.

 

As the result of the 6th and final stage of the race, a mountain individual time trial for 25.9 km, Simon Špilak was able to get 4th place in overall classification (1.07 behind the winner), while Iurii Trofimov finished at 8th position (+2.13).

 

"We spent a very good week, which ended with a nice result," DS Jose Azevedo said. "We tried to put two riders of Team Katusha in the Top 10 in the overall classification and we did it. All riders did their job at 100%, so now we have 4th and 8th places and 80 points in the WorldTour ranking.

 

"Yes, we missed just 3 seconds to reach the podium place with Simon, but that’s cycling. Anyway, at Vuelta al País Vasco we proved that our team is headed the right way this season and I am sure we will get even better results  in the upcoming races."

 

Today’s individual time trial started and finished in Markina-Xemein. The distance of 25.9 km included 2 hard climbs which decided both the stage and overall classification of Vuelta al País Vasco.

 

The winner of the stage was the ITT World Champion Tony Martin from Omega Pharma – QuickStep. Second place went to Alberto Contador from Tinkoff-Saxo, who lost only 7 seconds. Michal Kwiatkowski, also from Omega Pharma – QuickStep stopped the clock at 15 seconds behind his teammate.

 

Katusha’s rider Simon Špilak was really close to the leaders during the whole distance, but missed just 1 second for a stage podium, placing 4th. Iurii Trofimov took 15th place, loosing 1 minute and 44 seconds to the stage winner.

 

The result from the ITT allowed Spilak to move up to 4th place in general classification of the race. Once again he was close to the podium, but missed just 3 seconds. Thanks to a good performance in the previous stages, Iurii Trofimov saved his position in Top 10 and finished the race in 8th.

 

"The stage was really hard, but I tried to show my maximum today," Spilak saod- "The second part of the stage was better for me and I was able to push harder and to get some seconds, but finally missed the podium for a mere nothing.

 

"Anyway I am satisfied with the result – I feel the progress of my shape coming along, even comparing with how it was in Paris – Nice. My next aim is Tour de Romandie, where I hope to be better."

 

"Indeed, the stage was tough, in every moment I had to push for 100%," Trofimov said. "I gave my all today. Finally, I am happy to be in the Top 10 of the GC and to get some points for Russia in the WorldTour. I hope to get more results in my next races."

 

Alberto Contador is the overall winner of Vuelta al País Vasco. The final podium was completed by Michal Kwiatkowski (+0.49) and Jean-Christoph Peraud from AG2R La Mondiale (+1.04).

 

Team Katusha still holds the second place in the UCI WorldTour team’s classification with 382 points after the Vuelta al País Vasco.

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