Logroo - Germany's John Degenkolb won for the third time on the Tour of Spain
as he triumphed in a sprint finish on the 166.4km 12th stage around
Logrono, whilst Spain's Alberto Contador maintained his overall lead on
In a reduced sprint due to a crash in the closing
stages, Degenkolb added to his victories in the third and fourth stages
as he surged to the line ahead of Belgian Tom Boonen and Italy's Jacopo
Contador stayed out of trouble to remain 20 seconds
clear of compatriot Alejandro Valverde in the general classification
with Britain's 2013 Tour de France winner Chris Froome still 1min 20sec
back in fourth.
"I feel great, I was hoping to win but I wasn't over-confident," said Degenkolb.
"I pushed for the sprint at the right time which was fundamental. The whole team did a great job."
it hasn't all been plain sailing for the Team Giant-Shimano rider as
Degenkolb revealed he has an infection that had caused him to struggle
on Wednesday's 11th stage from Pamplona to San Miguel de Aralar.
my leg was hurting and it was really difficult because I have a small
infection. It is nothing to worry about, though, and you just have to
After some demanding mountain finishes and an
individual time trial on Tuesday, the forgiving flat 20.8km course
around Logrono was a relief for the sprinters in the peloton.
Matthias Krizek broke clear in the first three kilometres on the first
of eight laps around the course and left on his own until the last lap
when the Cannondale rider was caught with 12km to go.
for positioning at the front of the peloton then began to form, but
there was a much smaller bunch sprint than expected as a crash left the
likes of Michael Matthews and Nacer Bouhanni out of contention.
And Degenkolb took advantage to seal his eighth career Tour of Spain stage victory after winning five times back in 2012.
The race moves further west on Friday with a 188.7km ride from Belorado to Obregon.
Results from the Tour of Spain 12th stage, a 166.4km ride around Logrono, on Thursday:
1. John Degenkolb (GER/GIA) 4hr 11 min 18sec, 2. Tom Boonen (BEL/OPQ) same time, 3. Jacopo Guarnieri (ITA/AST) s.t., 4. Peter Sagan (SVK/CAN) s.t., 5. Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (ARG/LAM) s.t., 6. Yannick Martinez (FRA/EUC) s.t., 7. Lloyd Mondory s.t. (FRA/ALM), 8. Fabian Cancellara (SWI/TRE) s.t., 9. Jasper Stuyven (BEL/TRE) s.t., 10 Guillaume Boivin (CAN/CAN) s.t.
1. Alberto Contador (ESP/TIN) 44hr 38min 14sec, 2. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/MOV) at 20sec, 3. Rigoberto Uran (COL/OPQ) 1:08, 4. Chris Froome (GBR/SKY) 1:20,5. Joaquin Rodriguez (ESP/KAT) 1:35, 6. Samuel Sanchez (ESP/BMC) 1:52, 7. Fabio Aru (ITA/AST) 2:13, 8. Winner Anacona (COL/LAM) 2:22, 9. Robert Gesink (NED/BKN) 2:55, 10. Damiano Caruso (ITA/CAN) 3:51