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Vuelta a Espana 2017: Chris Froome secures historic double as Matteo Trentin wins final stage

Jack Elton-Walters
10 Sep 2017

The final stage was simply a procession as Chris Froome crossed the line to win Tour-Vuelta double

Chris Froome (Team Sky) crossed the finish line on Stage 21 of the 2017 Vuelta a Espana in Madrid to wrap up his historic Grand Tour double. He all but sealed the win the day before but needed to finish safely along side his rivals over the final finish line to secure the win.

The sprint at the end of the processional stage went to Matteo Trentin (Quick-Step Floors), but that was only minor news on the final day of the three-week race.

Froome is the first rider since Marco Pantani in 1998 to win two consecutive Grand Tours in the same season, and the first to take the Tour-Vuelta double since Berhand Hinault in 1978.

Pantani backed up a Giro d'Italia win with the Tour de France as Miguel Indurain had done twice earlier that decade.

Hinault's Vuelta a Espana win also came ahead of that year's Tour victory as it pre-dated the Spanish race's move to the latter part of the season.

Trentin went early for the sprint but was strong enough to stay clear for his fourth stage win. Froome crossed the line in 11th, mixing it with the sprinters, andthat was enough for him to win the green jersey points competition as well as the overall GC.

Photo: Presse Sports / Offside

All but sealed it the day before

Stage 20 was the last chance for one of Froome's rivals to knock him off the top step of the podium but he was alive to the threat.

The stage win deservedly went to veteran Grand Tour champion Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo), who went out the way he's always ridden by attacking hard at the foot of the legendary Angliru to take one final victory.

It was not enough to move Contador onto the podium but he'll have to console himself with the knowledge that he went out to win at every opportunity rather than follow Froome's wheel for three weeks as has become a habit of many others.

Early on during Stage 21, Contador rode off the front of the peloton to wave goodbye to his home fans who had massed at the barriers on the circuit in Madrid.

After crossing the finish line (with eight laps to go) with his hand on his heart, Contador went back into the bunch and left the racing to others.

By the end of the stage, Contador dropped for fourth to fifth overall after getting caught behind a split.

Froome wants all the jerseys

Leading the points competition into the final stage as a collateral result of his overall win, Froome appeared prepared to fight for green too.

Several times Team Sky sent riders off the front ahead of the intermediate sprint which forced a reaction from Quick-Step Floors.

Matteo Trentin, who had slipped to third in the competition, had the chance to regain the jersey by taking enough points on the closing stage.

During the first intermediate sprint, Ian Stannard led Froome out by Quick-Step bunched up and Trentin took maximum points.

For the final sprint of the day Froome was again present and gained enough points to stop Trentin from getting the competition win.

Futile breakaway

Three riders - Nick Schultz (Caja Rural), Alessandro De Marchi (BMC Racing) and Rui Costa (UAE Team Emirates) - went off the front with minimal chance of staying away to the stage win.

Schultz was caught first and then with one lap of the circuit to run, the other two were reeled back in.

Now with under 6km of the 2017 season's last Grand Tour left, the sprinters' teams massed at the front of the peloton and vied for control.

Quick-Step Floors were the most visible team but plenty of others were present in the hope of leading their rider to a stage win.

Photo: Presse Sports / Offside

Vuelta a Espana 2017 Stage 21: Arroyomolinos - Madrid 117.6km, result

1. Matteo Trentin (ITA) Quick-Step Floors 3:06:25
2. Lorrenzo Manzin (FRA) FDJ, at same time
3. Soren Kragh Andersen (DEN) Team Sunweb, at st
4. Tom Van Asbroeck (BEL) Cannondale-Drapac, at st
5. Ivan Cortina (ESP) Bahrain-Merida, at st
6. Magnus Cort Nielsen (DEN) Orica-Scott, at st
7. Kenneth Vanbilsen (BEL) Cofidis, at st 
8. Sacha Modolo (ITA) UAE-Team Emirates, at st
9. Michael Schwarzmann (GER) Bora-Hansgrohe, at st
10. Daniel Hoelgaard (NOR) FDJ, at st

The final podium. Photo: Yuzuru Sunada

Vuelta a Espana 2017: Final General Classification 

1. Chris Froome (GBR) Team Sky, 82:30:02
2. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) Bahrain-Merida, at 2:15
3. Ilnur Zakarin (RUS) Katusha-Alpecin, at 2:51
4. Wilco Kelderman (NED) Team Sunweb, at 3:15
5. Alberto Contador (ESP) Trek-Segafredo, at 3:18
6. Wout Poels (NED) Team Sky, 6:59
7. Michael Woods (CAN) Cannondale-Drapac, at 8:27
8. Miguel Angel Lopez (COL) Astana, at 9:13
9. Steven Kruijswijk (NED) LottoNL-Jumbo, at 11:18
10. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing, at 15:50