Chris Froome secured his maiden Vuelta a España title in Madrid on Sunday evening and became the first cyclist to win the Spanish grand tour in the same year as the Tour de France since Bernard Hinault in 1978.
Having built up a lead of 2min 15sec over his closest rival, Vincenzo Nibali, through 20 stages of racing, Froome enjoyed an incident-free procession from Arroyomolinos to the Spanish capital alongside his team who had worked so hard for their leader’s cause, sharing beers and taking selfies on route.
In a bunch sprint on Madrid’s Paseo della Castellana, Matteo Trentin won the stage on the line, which seemed to be enough to win the best sprinter’s green jersey too, but Froome battled to finish 11th and hold on to green in addition to the overall winner’s red jersey and the combined classification’s white jersey.
Trentin had needed to win the intermediate sprint at 84km to have any chance of claiming the sprint crown and although he did so, Froome made his intentions clear, pushing all the way for the minor points on offer.
From there Trentin’s Quick-Step Floors team took control, chasing down a breakaway trio of Rui Costa, Alessandro De Marchi and Nick Schultz before putting their man in position to sprint for the stage win. But Froome chased hard to ensure another jersey added to the collection as he sealed another grand tour triumph in style.
Alberto Contador, on his final grand tour, did a lap of honour around the streets of Madrid after the race holding a Spanish flag aloft. The three-time Vuelta champion, who won the penultimate stage of the race, finished fifth in the general classification.
The Belgian rider Jolien D’Hoore earlier won the women’s 87km Madrid Challenge for the second year in a row for Wiggle High5, seeing off the challenge of Australia’s Chloe Hosking.
Final general classification
1 Christopher Froome (Gbr) Team Sky 82h 30m 02s,
2 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 2m 15s,
3 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin at 2:51,
4 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team Sunweb at 3:15,
5 Alberto Contador (Spa) Trek-Segafredo at 3:18,
6 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky at 6:59,
7 Michael Woods (Can) Cannondale-Drapac at 8:27,
8 Miguel Ángel López (Col) Astana Pro Team at 9:13,
9 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo 11:18,
10 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 15:50