Storer wins Vuelta seventh stage, Roglic keeps lead in mountains


BALCON DE ALICANTE, Spain – Michael Storer won the punishing seventh stage of the Spanish Vuelta on Friday, and Primoz Roglic kept the overall lead after the race’s most serious test in the mountains so far.

Storer, an Australian rider for DSM, claimed his biggest professional win after finishing the stage in 4 hours, 10 minutes, 13 seconds. He dropped Carlos Verona, who came in second at 21 seconds behind Storer, over the final grueling uphill kilometer.

Storer was part of a large breakaway early in the 152-kilometer (94-mile) stage starting in Gandia that took riders up and over five mountain climbs before a summit finish atop the category-one Balcon de Alicante.

“This was my goal, to win a stage at a race,” Storer said. “I am going to have to set a new goal now.”

Roglic, the defending two-time race winner, appeared to be in danger of losing the lead to one of the breakaway riders. But he managed to hang onto the red jersey despite finishing 16th at more than 3 1/2 minutes behind Storer.

Well protected by his Jumbo-Visma team, Roglic only had to respond once to an attack that included title hopeful and Olympic gold medalist Richard Carapaz. Midway through the stage, Roglic latched onto the wheel of Carapaz.

“For me it was super hot and we went already on the first climb all out,” Roglic said. “Then for me it was just waiting to come over the finish. We saw quite some action so in the next days we can expect more attacks.”

Felix Grossschartner of Bora-Hansgrohe moved into second place in the general classification at eight seconds behind Roglic. Movistar leader Enric Mas is third at :25 back. Egan Bernal trails by 41 seconds and his Ineos Grenadiers teammate Carapaz is 2:48 back.

Hugh Carthy, who finished the race third overall last year, withdrew during the day.

Former Vuelta winner Alejandro Valverde also bowed out after crashing on a descent. The Spanish veteran tried to continue but called it quits minutes later.

Saturday’s stage stays in Spain’s hot southeast for a 173-kilometer (107-mile) flat trek from Santa Pola to La Manga del Mar Menor that is made for sprinters.

Davide Rebellin dies after hit by truck while training

Getty Images

MILAN — Italian cyclist Davide Rebellin, one of the sport’s longest-serving professionals, died after being struck by a truck while training. He was 51.

Rebellin was riding near the town of Montebello Vicentino in northern Italy when he was hit by a truck near a motorway junction. The vehicle did not stop, although Italian media reported that the driver may have been unaware of the collision.

Local police are working to reconstruct the incident and find the driver.

Rebellin had only retired from professional cycling last month, bringing to an end a career that had spanned 30 years. He last competed for Work Service-Vitalcare-Dynatek and the UCI Continental team posted a tribute on its social media accounts.

“Dear Davide, keep pedaling, with the same smile, the same enthusiasm and the same passion as always,” the Italian team said. “This is not how we imagined the future together and it is not fair to have to surrender so suddenly to your tragic absence.”

“To your family, your loved ones, your friends and all the enthusiasts who, like us, are crying for you right now, we just want to say that we imagine you on a bicycle, looking for new roads, new climbs and new challenges even up there, in the sky.”

Rebellin’s successes included victories at Paris-Nice and Tirreno-Adriatico as well as winning a stage in the 1996 edition of the Giro d’Italia, which he also led for six stages.

Rebellin won silver in the road race at the 2008 Olympic Games, but he was later stripped of his medal and banned for two years after a positive doping test. He had denied wrongdoing.

CAS upholds Nairo Quintana DQ from Tour de France for opioid use

Getty Images

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – The disqualification of two-time Tour de France runner-up Nairo Quintana from his sixth place in the 2022 race for misuse of an opioid was confirmed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

CAS said its judges dismissed Quintana’s appeal and agreed with the International Cycling Union that the case was a medical matter rather than a doping rules violation. He will not be banned.

The court said the judges ruled “the UCI’s in-competition ban on tramadol was for medical rather than doping reasons and was therefore within the UCI’s power and jurisdiction.”

Traces of the synthetic painkiller tramadol were found in two dried blood spot samples taken from the Colombian racer five days apart in July, the UCI previously said.

Quintana’s case is among the first to rely on the dried blood spot (DBS) method of collecting samples which the World Anti-Doping Agency approved last year.

Tramadol was banned in 2019 from use at cycling races because of potential side effects. They include the risk of addiction, dizziness, drowsiness and loss of attention.

Quintana finished second in the Tour de France in 2013 and 2015, won both times by Chris Froome. He won the 2014 Giro d’Italia.