Vuelta a Espana in photos: stages 7 to 9

by Matt de Neef

The first nine stages of this year’s Vuelta a Espana are now complete and with the first rest day now behind them as well, the riders are set to begin the tough second week of the race. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) leads proceedings going into the stage 10 ITT, but only just. Before the race continues, we hope you enjoy this gallery of images from stages 7 to 9 of the Vuelta, courtesy of Iri Greco and Jim Fryer of BrakeThrough Media.

Be sure to check out Jim and Iri’s photos from stages 1 to 3 and stages 4 to 6 of the Vuelta as well.

When the riders began stage 7 of the Vuelta in Alhendín, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) was in the red leaders’ jersey for the second time in the race. He held on to that lead when he finished in the peloton on stage 7, behind Alessandro De Marchi (Cannondale) who attacked solo from the day’s breakaway before riding away to victory.

Stage 8 finished with a bunch kick in Albacete, with the Cofidis-bound Nacer Bouhanni ( taking a controversial, swerve-laden sprint win ahead of Michael Matthews (Orica-GreenEdge) and Peter Sagan (Cannondale). Valverde finished in the peloton, earning a fourth day in red.

And on stage 9 — the final day before the first rest day — Winner Anacona (Lampre-Merida) lived up to his name, attacking out of a 31-rider-strong break and soloing to victory. A late attack from Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) saw Valverde distanced slightly, but it wasn’t all bad for Movistar — Nairo Quintana was able to follow Contador and moved into the overall lead.

And so, ahead of today’s stage 10 ITT, Quintana leads the GC by just three seconds with Valverde a further five seconds behind. There’ll almost certainly be another change in the standings once today’s stage is complete.

In the meantime, be sure to check out the following gallery of photos from stages 7 to 9 courtesy of BrakeThrough Media. Click through to follow them on Instagram and Twitter.

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