Vuelta a Espana: Marczynski doubles up in Antequera

On a day of GC drama that saw Alberto Contador pull off a trademark attack and race leader Chris Froome hit the deck twice, Tomasz Marczyński‘s stage win became second fiddle at the Vuelta a Espana. Add into the mix incidents with a fan pushing Maxim Belkov off the road, and a spectator being shoved into path of support motorbike.

The Polish rider on Lotto Soudal hadn’t won a race since 2015 before the Vuelta but on Thursday was raising his arms in triumph for the second time in a week. Although Marczyński’s second stage win was far from the main story on a tumultuous day at the Spanish Grand Tour, 33-year-old was basking in the glory regardless of the external going ons. 

Based an hour east of the Antequera Los Dólmenes stage finish in Granada, Marczyński had the advantage of ‘home knowledge’ during the stage and despite Brendan Canty (Cannondale-Drapac) and Omar Fraile (Dimension Data) looking most likely to drop their breakaway companions for a solo win, Marczyński remained calm. Four kilometres from the summit of the Puerto del Torcal, Marczyński made his stage winning move to enjoy a solo win with Fraile second best at 52 seconds.

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“It was an amazing feeling to win today, especially because the race started really close to my home place,” said Marczyński. “There were a lot of people I know at the side of the road and that gave me extra motivation. Today was a day during which I really wanted to try something, so I attacked several times in the beginning to make it into the breakaway.

“I spent a lot of energy, but in the end I was happy to have done so because I felt really good. I thought ‘Now that I’m here, I have an opportunity to win a second stage, so I’m going to make sure I use it as well as possible’. I knew I had the legs to do it again today and I was in control the whole day.”

The former national road and time trial champion took his first Vuelta win in a three up sprint into Sagunt. His stage 12 win showcased another skillset of the Pole as he explained his move all came down to timing and measuring his efforts.

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