Alcañiz, Spain — Argos-Shimano speedster John Degenkolb is sending a message loud and clear at this year’s Vuelta a España stage race. With three stage wins so far, including his latest in Friday’s Stage 7, the 23-year-old has emerged as one of the top sprinters in the sport.
Riding his Felt F1 team bike, Degenkolb has won each of the Vuelta’s sprint finishes in the first week of the season’s final grand tour.
“It’s really crazy because I think no one expected me to win three stages of the Vuelta,” Degenkolb told Eurosport after the win. “Today it was a big fight but we showed a lot of confidence from the beginning by riding on the front and bringing back the break.”
The remnants of a four-man breakaway, which went away early in the day, were swept up with 15km to go in the 164km stage from Huesca to Alcañiz. At that point, the battle for the sprint began, and once again Argos-Shimano played it to perfection.
Degenkolb came from behind to beat Italian Elia Viviani and Australian Allan Davis for the win. The German also leads the points competition after one week in Spain.