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by Shane Stokes
February 20, 2017
In today’s edition of the CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Wellens takes final stage of Ruta del Sol as Valverde lands 100th career victory; Roglic clocks up overall victory in Volta ao Algarve, Antunes lands final stage; Hermans seals Tour of Oman success as Kristoff nets third stage win; Vichot takes Tour du Haut Var, Simon wins final stage; De Riter claims final stage of the Tour of East Gippsland, Lobigs takes overall; Valverde celebrates career milestone but keeps eyes on next objective; Roglic targeting more stage race wins; Cyclist shot multiple times in chest, head in Everton; Andy Schleck ties the knot; Stream wipes out bunch in Tour of Oman; Emirates Team New Zealand mixing sailing and cycling
Commenting after he took his fifth edition of the Ruta del Sol and, in doing so, took his 100th career win, Alejandro Valverde moved into the same company as the other current victory centenarians, the sprinters Mark Cavendish, André Greipel and Tom Boonen.
“I’m super happy. It was quite a hard-fought race and it made it even more sweet to win,” he said afterwards. “The team was superb, all of them – as with every victory I’ve achieved, I can’t thank them enough for their support. It wasn’t an easy day by any means: rain, cold temperatures, gusty winds… We all really suffered. At the end, that struggling made difficult to see any attacks, and so we secured this fifth victory in the race, which took so much to obtain.”
He finished the event just one second ahead of multiple Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador, and will take satisfaction in that. However reaching a victory milestone is even more important.
“It obviously makes me happy to be celebrating 100 victories as a professional. It’s the sign of a fantastic career, one where above all I’ve enjoyed a lot riding my bike – and I hope I can improve those numbers in the future. There won’t be much time for celebrations, as Paris-Nice starts in two weeks’ time and it will be a big goal for us. Let’s hope the season continues this way.”