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"The weather changed on the first climb, from 40°C yesterday to 14° today. Laurens has trouble with weather changes like that and was dropped at the start of the final climb. Robert's still eighth, so that's good."...

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LAURENS TEN DAM

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MORENO HOFLAND

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ROBERT GESINK

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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VUELTA A ESPAÑA

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WILCO KELDERMAN

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31.08.2014 @ 19:06 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

It was a bad day for Belkin on a rainy mountain stage in the Vuelta a Espana. While Robert Gesink and Wilco Kelderman managed to limit their losses, Laurens Ten Dam lost more than 3 minutes to the best GC riders while Moreno Hofland abandoned the race.

 

Robert Gesink kept the Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM in the top 10 overall in the wet Vuelta a España stage to Aramón Valdelinares. He placed 24th on the summit finish behind victor Winner Anacona (Lampre-Merida) and slipped from seventh to eighth overall behind leader Nairo Quintana (Movistar).

"A top 10 overall is still good," Gesink said. "The last climb was hard, the weather really changed, it was really cold. I just kept fighting."

Gesink maintained his place with the leaders including Quintana, Alejandro Valverde and Chris Froome until the final attacks began. Dan Martin shot free, causing others to respond and Contador to launch an attack. Gesink kept his ground and finished at 2-55 minutes back from Anacona, or 39 seconds behind Contador.

"24th place does not seem great, but I was close to the others," Gesink added. "It was my max today."
 

Wilco Kelderman came home in the rain just 19 seconds back at 3-14. Laurens ten Dam suffered from the extreme weather changes and lost time as soon as the eight-kilometre Aramón Valdelinares climb began.


"The weather changed on the first climb, from 40°C yesterday to 14° today," Sports Director, Erik Dekker said. "Laurens has trouble with weather changes like that and was dropped at the start of the final climb. Robert's still eighth, so that's good."

A large, 31-man escape led for most of the day with Belkin's Paul Martens and eventual stage winner Anacona. Anacona held on, but the others cracked under the pressure of team Sky on the final climb.

Moreno Hofland unfortunately had to abandon early in the stage because of a respiratory infection. 
 

The Vuelta a España peloton enjoys a well-earned rest day tomorrow after nine days of racing. Dekker explained that the team will make an early start to preview Tuesday's time trial course and meet with the press.


"I'll ride the time trial and another hour on the rollers to keep my body going," added Gesink. "I know from experience that if I don’t do that, I'll feel bad the next day."

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