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Friday, 14 December, 2018

Dominant Froome extends Vuelta lead

Peloton face monster climb

Chris Froome leads the Vuelta by two seconds
1 of 1

Stage 17
Eurosport 2, 11.40am Wednesday

Chris Froome moved one step closer to adding the Vuelta a Espana to his four Tour de France titles with a dominant display in Tuesday's time trial.

The Brit is now 1-20 to ride into Madrid with the red jersey draped across his shoulders on Sunday after extending his lead over Vincenzo Nibali to one minute 58 seconds and claiming a second stage win of the race in the process.

Wilco Kelderman's second-place finish helped him move into third on the overall standings, 27 seconds ahead of Russian Ilnur Zakarin who slipped to fourth.

Alberto Contador was the biggest mover on his final Grand Tour time trial as he climbed to fifth in the standings courtesy of his fifth-placed finish on the stage.

The peloton head back into the mountains on Wednesday with three ascents, including a summit finish atop the Alto de los Machucos, to tackle on the 180.5km route.

Colombian starlet Miguel Angel Lopez has already taken victory on two mountain-top finishes in this year's Vuelta and bookmakers have installed him as a short-priced favourite.

He looks sure to be on the premises but there is little mileage in his price so is reluctantly passed over. 

With his general classification hopes long gone, Rafal Majka is solely on the hunt for stage victories.

Rafal Majka (right) goes on the attack

The Pole was successful on the brutal stage 14 and given he is nearly 90 minutes down on the red jersey, he is likely to be given some rope by the peloton again. At 10-1 he is an attractive each-way price.

A second stage victory of this year's Tour of Britain helped Caleb Ewan regain the leader's jersey on stage three.

The Australian pipped Norway's Edvald Boasson Hagen on the finish line in Scunthorpe and now holds a six-second advantage over previous leader Elia Viviani. Boasson Hagen is one second further back in third.

Stage four (ITV4, 10.45am) from Mansfield to Newark-on-Trent looks another chance for the sprinters to prosper.

R Majka
1pt each-way Hills

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Wilco Kelderman's second-place finish helped him move into third on the overall standings
E.W. Terms
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