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Fabio Jakobsen won his first Grand Tour stage since suffering serious injuries in a crash last year with a bunch sprint victory at the Vuelta a Espana.

The Dutchman, 24, held off Arnaud Demare and Magnus Cort to claim an emotional win on stage four in Molina de Aragon.

Jakobsen sustained severe head injuries at the 2020 Tour of Poland in a crash with Jumbo-Visma’s Dylan Groenewegen.

“It’s a dream come true for me,” said Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider Jakobsen.

“After the crash it was a long way back, but I’m happy to be here. It took a lot of time and effort.

“I was helped by a lot of other people and this is also their victory. The doctors, surgeons, and medical staff, the team, this is also their victory.

“This is also my family’s victory. They’re the reason I’m here.”

Jakobsen was put in a medically-induced coma after the crash and underwent several months of facial reconstruction surgery.

He returned to racing in April and claimed his first win since the horrific incident on stage two of the Tour de Wallonie in July, also winning the fifth stage of that race.

Jakobsen won two stages of the Vuelta in 2019.

His win on stage four of this year’s edition also saw him claim the green points jersey.

Overall race leader Rein Taaramae crashed late on but remains at the top of the general classification standings because his fall happened in the last 3km of the stage.

The Estonian leads France’s Kenny Elissonde by 25 seconds, with Olympic time trial champion Primoz Roglic of Slovenia five seconds further back.

The 2021 Vuelta runs until 5 September.

Stage four results

Fabio Jakobsen (Ned/Deceuninck-Quick-Step) 3hrs 43mins 07secsArnaud Demare (Fra/Groupama-FDJ) Same timeMagnus Cort (Den/EF Education-Nippo)Alberto Dainese (Ita/Team DSM)Michael Matthews (Aus/Team Bike-Exchange)Piet Allegaert (Bel/Cofidis)Jordi Meeus (Bel/Bora-Hansgrohe)Matteo Trentin (Ita/UAE Team Emirates)Jasper Philipsen (Bel/Alpecin-Fenix)Riccardo Minali (Ita/Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert-Materiaux)

General classification after stage four

Rein Taaramae (Est/Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert-Materiaux) 13hrs 08mins 51secsKenny Elissonde (Fra/Trek-Segafredo) +25secsPrimoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +30secsLilian Calmejane (Fra/AG2R Citroen) +35secsEnric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +45secsMiguel Angel Lopez (Col/Movistar) +51secsAlejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +57secsGiulio Ciccone (Ita/Trek-Segafredo) Same timeEgan Bernal (Col/Ineos Grenadiers) Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain-Victorious) +1min 09secs

SOURCE: BBC Sport – Cycling RSS   (go to source)
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