Valverde Adds Spanish Road Race Title To World Title

Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)

Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) claimed his third Spanish national road race title on Sunday in his home town of Murcia. The world champion beat Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) in a two-up sprint, with Jesus Herrada (Cofidis) taking the final spot on the podium 16 seconds later. The trio had gone clear of the rest of the field on the final time up the Santuario de la Fuensanta (1km at 8 per cent), the climb that punctuated the 19km finishing circuit that was covered four times. With the bunch already well reduced, Herrada attacked early, and later had company when Sanchez accelerated and Valverde followed. They took a slim lead down the descent before starting to attack each other on the flat final part. Sanchez, who'd tried a couple of times, produced a stinging attack with just over 3.5km to go, but while Herrada was dropped, Valverde, despite a little hesitation, responded ...

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