Primoz Roglic won the eighth stage of the Vuelta a Espana after passing Remco Evenepoel in the final sprint.
Roglic won the 165-kilometer stage from Denia to Xorret de Cati by passing his competitor on the final turn.
As Slovenia’s Roglic put it, “in the sprint it’s always a bit of a gamble,” but he knew he had the legs and could pull it off.
Evenepoel of Belgium said he was unaware of their split and subsequent quest for victory.
Evenepoel admitted, “I didn’t realize we were fighting for the win.” Truthfully, I feel a little bit dumb.
The third-place finisher was the Spanish cyclist Juan Ayuso.
American Sepp Kuss, who finished eighth on stage eight, has taken over the race lead from Lenny Martinez, who finished 70 seconds back.
Kuss is currently in the lead, followed by Marc Soler of Spain by 43 seconds and Jose Martinez of France by 1 minute.
Sixth-placed Evenepoel, seventh-placed Roglic, and eighth-placed Jonas Vingegaard are only two and a half minutes behind race leader Kuss.
Stage eight results
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 4hrs 13mins 52secs
2. Remco Evenepoel (Bel/Soudal-Quick-Step) Same time
3. Juan Ayuso (Spa/UAE Team Emirates)
4. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar Team) +2secs
5. Jonas Vingegaard (Den/Jumbo-Visma) Same time
6. Joao Almeida (Por/UAE Team Emirates)
7. Sepp Kuss (USA/Jumbo-Visma)
8. Marc Soler (Spa/UAE Team Emirates)
9. Wout Poels (Ned/Bahrain Victorious) +34secs
10. Alexsandr Vlasov (Rus/Bora – Hansgrohe) +39secs
1. Sepp Kuss (USA/Jumbo-Visma) 30hrs 51mins 06secs
2. Marc Soler (Spa/UAE Team Emirates) +43secs
3. Lenny Martinez (Fra/Groupama-FDJ) +1min
4. Wout Poels (Ned/Bahrain Victorious) +2min 05secs
5. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain Victorious) +2min 29secs
6. Remco Evenepoel (Bel/Soudal-Quick-Step) +2min 31secs
7. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +2min 38secs
8. Jonas Vingegaard (Den/Jumbo-Visma) +2min 42secs
9. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar Team) +2min 42secs
10. Juan Ayuso (Spa/UAE Team Emirates) +2min 52secs