Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-QuickStep) was the second man down the ramp for the stage 21 time trial that ended the Vuelta a España. He rolled across the finish line 52:33 later, celebrating the completion of a successful race and sealing his green jersey win.
“The legs are empty. I enjoyed the last kilometres, I knew I had enough time,” Jakobsen told Eurosport after finishing his TT. “I waved at the crowd and I cheered like it was a victory, because, for me, to finish the time trial in Santiago is, I think, the biggest victory so far. It’s a special feeling.”
A year after suffering horrific injuries at the Tour of Poland, the 25-year-old Dutchman sprinted to a total of three stage victories throughout the Vuelta, his third coming just before a series of challenging stages typical of a Grand Tour’s final week. In the mountains of Asturias and steep hills of Galicia, Jakobsen’s race was against the time cut.
Stage 20 was exemplary of the way the team rallied around their sprinter, all eight of the Deceuninck-QuickStep riders finishing together 41:13 behind the winner.
“My teammates mean the world to me,” Jakobsen said. “They stay with me on the uphill, they pull for me in the valley, take me on the descents, and they bring me to the finish. This jersey is theirs also. I’m happy that I can take it home and that I made it here to Santiago.”