Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) won the queen stage and the final individual hilly time-trial to take the overall win (and the points jersey) in Vuelta al Pais Vasco, earning himself an even larger place in the hearts of the Basques. He became only the second Euskaltel winner of the stage race after Iban Mayo in 2003. Miguel Madriaga, the Euskaltel team manager was delighted – just the boost he needs in his search for further sponsors. I’m sure the local bank Sabadell Guipuzcoano – who stepped in at the last moment to save both this race and the Clasica San Sebastian – will have been pleased with the return on their investment.
Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha), also a double stage winner, rode the time trial of his life to finish second overall and win the prize for ‘most elegant rider’. Continue reading