Alexandre Vinokourov celebrated his 33rd birthday with an impressive time trial win in the Vuelta - and with just one easy stage left to go, barring major disaster, he is just hours away from taking the first major Tour of his career.

In the 27.5 kilometre time trial Astana pro finished six seconds ahead of Samuel Sanchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and 19 of his arch-rival Alejandro Valverde (Caisse D?Epargne-Illes Balears).

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