Rotherham’s Ben Swift’s chance to win first Grand Tour stage

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BEN Swift will go for his first Grand Tour stage win this afternoon in the Vuelta a Espana after a dramatic turnaround in the race yesterday.

The Rotherham sprint ace, aged 24, will hope he can get a strong lead out from his Team Sky colleagues now that team leader Chris Froome is out of contention in the general classification standings.

The 205.5km from Aguilar de Campoo to Valladolid seems ideal for Swift, who has shown good form over three tough mountain stages last weekend and again yesterday.

He finished 48th on the 187.3km from Santander to Fuente Dé, but the real action was at the front as Spanish trio Alberto Contador, Joaquin Rodriguez and Alejandro Valverde switched positions at the head of the race.

Contador, one of only five riders to win all three Grand Tours of Italy, France and Spain, beat Rodriguez by two minutes 38 seconds to claim an overall lead of one minute 52 seconds over Valverde, who had finished just six seconds behind the new wearer of the red jersey.