Vuelta a Espana 2010 stage 10 photo gallery by Graham Watson>>

Imanol Erviti took Caisse d’Epargne’s second consecutive stage at La Vuelta today, as he rode alone in to Vilanova.

The Spaniard had attacked the break with around 15km to go and never looked back. He time trialled to victory on the narrow twisty roads that brought the race down from the summit of the Alto del Rat Penat, the only classified climb of the day.

As Erviti held a 35 second gap, the eight riders behind him never managed to organise themselves in to a coherent group.

Slightly further back still was the big group of race favourites who had lacked any real conviction when tackling the steep slopes of the first category climb. Not that it had been an easy flat stage.

The gruppeto finished today over 16 minutes down. Britain’s Mark Cavendish, who had stretched his legs in the intermediate sprint earlier on the stage, and David Millar both finished safely in there.

Schleck and O’Grady head home

The bigger story of the day was the non participation of Saxo Bank riders Andy Schleck and Stuart O’Grady. When the pair didn’t turn up on the start line, information was released saying the pair had been excluded for breaking the team’s internal code of conduct.

What they had done remained a mystery.

Rather than quash the rumours, team boss Bjarne Riis left them to squirm, and let social networking sites and internet forums work themselves into a stupor over what crime the two riders had committed.

n the end it turned out they had done nothing more than go out for a drink after dinner and not get back to the team hotel until 1am. Is there more to it? Both Andy Schleck and O’Grady are leaving Saxo Bank at the end of the season, along with Frank Schleck, to ride for the new Luxemburg-based team.

Although the pair are in Spain to support Frank Schleck in his bid for overall victory, maybe Riis’ patience had worn thin. Even so, it seems his reaction was over the top.

RESULT

Tour of Spain stage 10: Tarragona – Vilanova i la Geltrü 175.7km

1. Imanol Erviti (Esp) Caisse d’Epargne 4-13-31hr


2. Romain Zingle (Bel) Cofidis at 37 secs

3. Greg Van Avermat (Bel) Omega Pharma Lotto

4. Mauro Finetto (Ita) Liquigas

5. Javier Moreno (Esp) Andalucia

6. Anders Lund (Den) Saxo Bank

7. Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Francaise des Jeux

8. Giampaolo Cheula (Ita) Footon Servetto at same time

9. Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank at 42 secs

10. Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz) Astana at 1-36 mins



General Classification after stage 10

1. Joaquin Rodriguez (Esp) Katusha 42-11-49hrs


2. Igor Anton (Esp) Euskaltel Euskadi at 2 secs

3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas at 4 secs

4. Xavier Tondo (Esp) Cervelo  at 44 secs

5. Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) Omega Pharma Lotto at 54 secs

6. Ruben Plaza (Esp) Caisse d’Epargne 1-17 mins

7. Ezequiel Mosquera (Esp) Xacobeo Galicia 1-20 mins

8. Nicholas Roche (Ire) Ag2r La Mondiale 1-21 mins

9. Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Caisse d’Epargne 1-24 mins

10. Peter Velits (Slo) HTC Columbia 1-28 mins

Joaquin Rodriguez leads, Vuelta a Espana 2010 stage 10



Joaquin Rodriguez takes the race lead

Vuelta a Espana 2010: Related links



Stage 10 photo gallery by Graham Watson



Stage nine: Lopez wins demanding day at Vuelta from escape


Stage eight: Moncoutie takes the win as Anton moves into lead




Sky soigneur on Vuelta dies of bacterial infection



Stage seven: Petacchi wins stage seven



Stage six: Hushovd demonstrates climbing skills on way to Vuelta win



Stage five: Farrar beats Cavendish for Vuelta stage win



Stage four: Anton wins stage but Gilbert keeps red jersey



Stage four photo gallery by Graham Watson



Stage three: Gilbert attacks to win stage and take race lead



Stage two: Hutarovich beats Cavendish to Vuelta stage win



Vuelta stage one: Cavendish leads after HTC-Columbia win team time trial



The British riders to have led one of the grand tours



Vuelta a Espana 2010: Cycling Weekly’s coverage index

  • Mike

    Andy has gone down a lot in my estimation.
    I was always a big suporter, but If this is true it is plain arogance.
    He has a contract with Saxo Bank and he should always do his best for the team untill his contract is up.
    Riders are the first to complain, and quite rightly, when salaries are slow in being paid. This smacks of “Im leaving for another team, so I dont care”.
    Shame, and I thought he was a nice guy.
    Not the actions of a true profesional.

  • John Calliott

    Sporten dot dk has a longer version of the Riis interview, with Riis saying it was 5:00, not 1:00 as Schleck said in his press release. They claim to have their own source saying that it was 5:30, and that it wasn’t a case of a shared bottle, but a full on drinking spree. I’d hate to be in a descent on switchbacks with guys coming off that in the group.

  • theswordsman

    Some of us got worked into a stupor because Cycling News had a differently worded quote, and stated quite clearly in their article and sub-title that the pair had not returned until five in the morning, which would be much worse, probably involve more alcohol, and mean that Schleck had lied to the press in his statement. If it really was two drinks and one o’clock, I guess we shouldn’t trust the other source any more.

  • Ken Evans

    Don’t mess with big Bjarne !