Jasper Philipsen takes victory in second stage after mass crash in windy conditions

Jasper Philipsen won his second stage at the 2021 Vuelta a España as Kenny Elissonde took the overall lead following a mass crash about 12km from the Albacete finish.

The Belgian rider Philipsen (Alpecin-Fenix) outsprinted Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-Quick Step) and Alberto Dainese (Team DSM) to win the 184.4km seventh stage between Tarancón and Albacete. The victory enabled Philipsen to take the green jersey from Jakobsen for the leader in the points standings.

“It’s even more beautiful if you see the final five kilometres,” said Philipsen, who won the second stage on Sunday. “We were there all together. The team is not riding so long together but it’s incredible what they all do for each other.”

Oier Lazkano (Caja Rural-RGA) spent 169km at the front of a stage contested in windy conditions, but the Spaniard was eventually reeled in. Just a few kilometres later there was a massive crash in the bunch with most of the field caught up in the carnage.

The race leader Rein Taaramae (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux) was badly affected and lost 2min 20sec.

Elissonde (Trek-Segafredo) was the major beneficiary of the crash to take over the red jersey. The French rider has a five-second lead over Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Vista) and 10sec on the third-placed Lilian Calmejane (AG2R Citroën).

“I was in the top 10 and the leader was not in the group,” Elissonde said of the crash. “This is not the way I wanted to take the jersey but we know in cycling when there is winds there is risk. You have to be vigilant. I don’t like it, it is not a pleasure, but I can’t do anything else.”

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