Eibar - Spanish rider Omar Fraile of Astana won Friday's fifth stage of the Tour of the Basque Country, a 163km run from Vitoria to Eibar, with two tough climbs ahead of a summit finish.
But Slovenia's former ski-jumper Primoz Roglic took another major step towards the title defending the yellow jersey by finishing with the winner and four other climbers.
The 28-year-old, runner up at Bergen in September's world time-trail championships, put in a blistering time-trial on Thursday to snatch the lead off France's Julian Alaphilippe and win the stage.
The Lotto rider Roglic now only needs to nurse a lead of nearly 2 minutes on Saturday's final day run over five category three hills.
Roglic leads Spain's Mikel Landa of Movistar by 1min 57sec while Ion Izagirre is in third at 2min 13sec.
Former Sky rider Landa said he was giving up nothing yet.
"Keeping a place on the podium would be good, but we think we can do some damage too. Maybe Roglic will pay tomorrow for his efforts today and until the very last moment we'll keep on trying," Landa said.