Rioja challenge awaits Rotherham’s Ben Swift

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IT was a tough day in the mountains yesterday for Rotherham’s Ben Swift but he had the pleasure of seeing Team Sky colleague Chris Froome make his mark on the Vuelta a Espana.

Sprint specialist Swift came home in the final group 16 minutes 22 seconds behind Froome, who was part of a four man break at the front of the peloton. Spaniard Alejandro Valverde won the 155.3km stage from Faustino V to the summit of the Arrate, in Eibar, with Froome coming home in third position.

Today the race moves from the Basque Country and heads for the Rioja region, but remains in the mountains, with a 160km ride from Barakaldo to the finish line at the Valdezcaray Ski Resort.