MADRID — A decade later, the US has a Grand Tour winner once more.
Sepp Kuss gained the Spanish Vuelta on Sunday to turn out to be the primary American to win one in every of biking’s high races since Chris Horner earned the Vuelta victory in 2013. The opposite Grand Tour occasions are the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.
Kuss had successfully secured the victory forward of Sunday’s largely ceremonial stage, when rivals within the Spanish capital revered his lead and didn’t launch any assaults as per biking custom.
“It’s unbelievable. I feel immediately was the stage that I suffered the a lot of the entire race, now I’m simply glad it’s over,” Kuss mentioned. “It’s life-changing for positive. I feel I’ll look again on this expertise with quite a lot of enjoyable reminiscences. It’s nonetheless sinking in, I feel it’s gonna take fairly a while. Now, a giant celebration. Household, mates are right here, and that’s gonna be actually particular.”
It was a shocking victory for Kuss, who entered the race in a supporting function to his Jumbo-Visma teammates Jonas Vingegaard — the two-time Tour de France winner — and Primoz Roglic, a three-time Vuelta winner.
Vingegaard and Roglic completed second and third total, respectively, capping a dominant efficiency and a historic treble for Jumbo-Visma, which swept all three Grand Tour occasions this 12 months. Roglic gained the Giro d’Italia in Might and Vingegaard repeated as Tour de France champion in July.
Kuss crossed the road alongside along with his teammates, who had been all carrying a particular jersey in honor of the group’s treble.
Alpecin-Deceuninck rider Kaden Groves prevailed within the closing dash to win the final stage.
Kuss took the lead within the eighth stage and by no means relinquished it regardless of being pushed laborious by his teammates a couple of occasions. The American held his personal on tough climbs up the Col du Tourmalet in France and the Alto de l’Angliru in northern Spain, ending the three-week race with a 17-second benefit.
The 29-year-old from Durango, Colorado, began biking as a solution to prepare all 12 months for his ardour of cross-country snowboarding. However he ultimately modified the skis for wheels and has for a number of seasons featured as one of many high help riders for Jumbo-Visma. He now lives in Andorra along with his spouse within the Pyrenees Mountains nestled between Spain and France.
The ultimate stage started at Madrid’s horse-racing observe and ended with riders taking laps round a few of the iconic monuments within the Spanish capital.
Kuss took it straightforward throughout the peloton and was celebrated by his rivals and followers who lined Madrid’s streets.
Final 12 months’s champion, Remco Evenepoel of Soudal Fast-Step, ended as King of the Mountains and have become the primary Belgian to win the Vuelta’s most combative award. Groves turned the primary Australian to win the factors standings, whereas 21-year-old Juan Ayuso of Spain was the very best younger rider.
Organizers introduced Sunday that the 2024 version of the Vuelta will start in Portugal, with the cities of Lisbon, Oeiras and Cascais internet hosting the race’s official begin.