Horner wins (really) old school style

Doug Pensinger

After a hectic stage 3 on the windy coast of Galicia Chris Horner attacked in the last kilometer to become the oldest ever Grand Tour stagewinner. The win and the bonus seconds that came with it was also enough to make hime the new race leader.

There were warnings at stage-start that the wind could cause trouble in the latter parts of stage and it turned out to be true as a crash and sidewinds split the peloton. Bauke Mollema of Belkin ended up behind which spurred Movistar on to try and push the advantage in retaliation for the move that put Valverde out of contention in the TdF but conditions weren't optimal and the attempt was less than wholehearted. The crosswind action lasted for the better part of the last 30 kms with groups getting dropped and finally regaining contact with the front as the leaders sat up a bit. With the peloton largely reunited the pace went up again as teams brought their captains in position for the final 4 km climb.

The big attack came from BMCs italian champion Ivan Santaromita who looked to have a solid gap before Chris Horner shot out of the Movistar-led peloton in pursuit. The Radioshack veteran quickly caught up with Santaromita and accelerated past him without hesitation to finish the stage solo across the line. The frontgroup of favorites charged home right in his wake with merely a few seconds gap but the bonus seconds on the line were enough to put Horner in the overall lead. Vincenzo Nibali and his Astana helpers probably didn't mourn the loss of the jersey too much this early in the race.

Stage result

1. USAHORNER, Christopher 184 RADIOSHACK LEOPARD 4h 30' 18''
2. ESPVALVERDE, Alejandro 1 MOVISTAR TEAM 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
3. ESPRODRIGUEZ, Joaquin 121 KATUSHA TEAM 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
4. COLURAN, Rigoberto 198 SKY PROCYCLING 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
5. IRLMARTIN, Daniel 111 GARMIN SHARP 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
6. NEDMOLLEMA, Bauke 41 BELKIN-PRO CYCLING TEAM 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
7. ITASCARPONI, Michele 131 LAMPRE-MERIDA 4h 30' 21'' + 3''
8. ESPZUBELDIA, Haimar 189 RADIOSHACK LEOPARD 4h 30' 24'' + 6''
9. IRLROCHE, Nicolas 205 TEAM SAXO-TINKOFF 4h 30' 24'' + 6''
10. ITABASSO, Ivan 71 CANNONDALE PRO CYCLING 4h 30' 24'' + 6''

General Classification

1. USAHORNER, Christopher 184 RADIOSHACK LEOPARD 9h 37' 40''
2. ITANIBALI, Vincenzo 31 ASTANA PRO TEAM 9h 37' 46'' + 6''
3. IRLROCHE, Nicolas 205 TEAM SAXO-TINKOFF 9h 37' 54'' + 14''
4. ESPZUBELDIA, Haimar 189 RADIOSHACK LEOPARD 9h 37' 56'' + 16''
5. CROKISERLOVSKI, Robert 186 RADIOSHACK LEOPARD 9h 38' 03'' + 23''
6. ESPVALVERDE, Alejandro 1 MOVISTAR TEAM 9h 38' 04'' + 24''
7. COLURAN, Rigoberto 198 SKY PROCYCLING 9h 38' 05'' + 25''
8. POLMAJKA, Rafal 202 TEAM SAXO-TINKOFF 9h 38' 18'' + 38''
9. CZEKREUZIGER, Roman 201 TEAM SAXO-TINKOFF 9h 38' 25'' + 45''
10. CZEKONIG, Leopold 151 TEAM NETAPP-ENDURA 9h 38' 25'' + 45''
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