Sam Bennett (BORA – hansgrohe) celebrated his thirteenth win of the season in Oviedo today as he won stage 14 of the Vuelta a España which marked his second stage win of the race.
The last few stages were for the climbers and GC contenders but not today’s stage. Stage 14 took the riders from San Vicente de la Barquera over 188 flat kilometres to Oviedo, where a bunch sprint was expected. Shortly before the finish, the riders had to cover one category three climb followed by one intermediate sprint.
As soon as the flag dropped, six riders pulled away and soon after they had a gap of almost three minutes. The team from Raubling took control of the peloton and worked for their sprinter Sam Bennett. The six escapees were able to stay away for many kilometers but the gap came down to 1:35 minutes as the peloton, with the sprinter teams like
However, BORA – hansgrohe were amongst the teams to keep the break in check as the race headed towards Oviedo for the upcoming bunch sprint, the breakaway was caught and the sprinter teams formed their lead-outs.
BORA – hansgrohe started to form their train for the Irish Champion Sam Bennett and coming into the final stretch of the stage, the pace was high and many teams wanted to stay at the front. Bennett’s wheel was one of the most wanted on the final stretch but Jempy Drucker and his final lead out man, Shane Archbold did a stellar job and led their captain perfectly into the final kilometre.
Fortunately, the Irish sprinter avoided a big crash in the bunch just after the flamme rouge and finished his teammates’ work off with an incredibly strong sprint, powering to his second stage win at La Vuelta on the slightly uphill finish. His second stage win marks his 13th win of the season and his 11th WorldTour win in a stage race.
Sam Bennett – “First and foremost, I really hope the guys that came down in that crash are okay. Today was the first time in a while on this race that the sprinters had an opportunity for a fast finish. The win means so much to me. Win number 13: my lucky number. I want to say a huge thank you to the guys for working so hard for me. They controlled the race all day and made sure the break didn’t make it to the line again on this race. Let’s hope win number 13 brings even more luck our way. Morale is super high in the team and I’m grateful to everyone for making today’s win possible.”