Vuelta a Espana: Birthday boy Jakobsen claims third stage victory

By Sports Desk August 31, 2021

Fabio Jakobsen celebrated his 25th birthday in style as he edged a mass sprint to claim his third stage win of the 2021 Vuelta a Espana.

Tuesday's 180 kilometre stretch from Laredo to Santo Cruz de Bezana was always expected to provide a frantic finish and so it proved.

Deceuninck – Quick Step rider Jakobsen was dropped by the peloton with around 60km remaining, yet recovered brilliantly with the help of his team-mates and launched his sprint to perfection at the end of stage 16.

Jakobsen held off a late surge by UAE-Team Emirates' Matteo Trentin, who eventually finished in third, with Jordi Meeus taking second place.

"A birthday is always a good day but I'm over the moon with this win," Jakobsen said. "I think what we saw today was the Wolfpack. 

"I was dropped on a climb, the guys waited for me and brought me back. I won the race but it was all because of them. 

"The only thing I can do is do a short, fast sprint, and they did everything else today. I'm never confident but I always try – because if you don't try then you never win."

The drama was not just consigned to the finish, as a crash took out 15 riders earlier in the day, including red jersey contenders Enric Mas, Guillaume Martin and Giulio Ciccone.

Trek - Segafredo rider Ciccone, who was positioned 12th overall at the start of the day, attempted to continue but had to withdraw.

There was no change in terms of the general classification standings as Odd Christian Eiking finished safely in the peloton.

With four stages to go ahead of Sunday's conclusion in Santiago de Compostela, Martin trails Eiking by 54 seconds and Primoz Roglic is one minute and 36s behind.

STAGE RESULT

1. Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck – Quick Step) 04:08:57
2. Jordi Meeus (BORA - hansgrohe) same time
3. Matteo Trentin (UAE-Team Emirates) same time

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Odd Christian Eiking (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) 64:06:47
2. Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) +0:54
3. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) +1:36

Points Classification

1. Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 250
2. Matteo Trentin (UAE-Team Emirates) 123
3. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education–Nippo) 114

King of the Mountains

1. Romain Bardet (Team DSM) 50 
2. Damiano Caruso (Bahrain Victorious) 31
3. Rafal Majka (UAE-Team Emirates) 29

What's next?

A whole different challenge awaits on Wednesday with a classic climb of the Lagos de Covadonga. The gruelling stage includes a climb almost 8km long with slopes reaching an inclination of 14 per cent

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