Carlos Rodríguez wins second stage in a row for Ineos Grenadiers on stage five of the Tour of the Basque Country

Remco Evenepoel moves into race lead after Primož Roglič misses crucial split

Carlos Rodríguez
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Carlos Rodríguez triumphed atop a tough final climb on stage five of the Tour of the Basque Country, meaning Ineos Grenadiers won its second stage in a row.

The Spaniard was the final survivor of the day's breakaway, and just about held off the chasing general classification riders to claim the win.

Behind, Remco Evenepoel (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) attacked on the last classified climb of the day. This was the decisive move of the day, with the Belgian finishing third and moving into the race lead.

Dani Martínez (Ineos Grenadiers), yesterday's stage winner, finished second, completing a successful day for his squad.

Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) failed to make the crucial move, and ended up losing over a minute to his rivals, and thus lost control of the yellow jersey.

How it happened

There were no category one climbs on the parcours on Friday, but four category threes, a second category ascent, and a punchy finish with ramps of up to 20% in the final 500m.

The 3485m of altitude gain in just 163.8km, and that climb to end it, meant that there would surely be a shuffling in the general classification come the end of the day.

In the first 60km of the day there were multiple aborted attacks as various riders tried to establish a break. These included Tao Geoghegan Hart (Ineos Grenadiers) and Gino Mäder (Bahrain-Victorious), but nothing stuck.

With 101km to go, Pello Bilbao (Bahrain-Victorious) was the first to make his move stick. He was followed by six more: Marc Soler (UAE Team Emirates), Carlos Rodríguez (Ineos Grenadiers), Lucas Hamilton (BikeExchange-Jayco), Sepp Kuss (Jumbo-Visma), Kenny Elissonde (Trek-Segafredo), and Sergio Samitier (Movistar).

Bilbao was dropped about 20km later, with the latter six forging the day’s break. However, Kuss and Samitier were dropped from the group, and then Hamilton crashed and was forced to abandon the race. The time gap approached 4 minutes at times, but the lead group were kept in check by the peloton.

Elissonde was the final rider to be dropped from the break, leaving Rodríguez and Soler alone up the road. 

The GC action did not kick off until the final classified climb of the day, the Karabieta. It was Remco Evenepoel (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) who attacked first, and he was followed by Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma), Dani Martínez (Ineos Grenadiers), Pello Bilbao (Bahrain-Victorious), Enric Mas (Movistar), Ion Izagirre (Cofidis), and Aleksandr Vlasov (Bora-Hansgrohe).

Decisively, this move did not contain race leader Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), although his teammate Vingegaard was there.

After the attacks behind, Rodríguez took the opportunity to forge ahead alone himself, dropping Soler, who joined the GC group behind.

With 5km to go, his lead was about 40 seconds, but this was dropping steadily as they headed towards the finish, but it was possibly not quick enough, with the Spaniard holding on.

The GC riders behind failed to fully cohere into a chasing unit, with the riders taking quick turns on the front as they spent time watching each other.

The final tough climb really tested the riders, and Rodríguez saw his lead evaporate in just 500m, but held on to claim the first win of his professional career.

Behind on the steep slopes, Vingegaard and Vlasov appeared to slip on the cobbles, while Martínez powered off to take second, ahead of Evenepoel.

Thanks to bonus seconds, the Belgian now leads the race ahead of Martínez in second. Roglič, meanwhile, came in 1:15 behind Rodríguez, meaning he slipped to eighth overall.

Results

Tour of the Basque Country 2022, stage five: Zamudio to Mallabia (163.8km)

1. Carlos Rodríguez (Esp) Ineos Grenadiers, in 4-07-09
2. Daniel Felipe Martínez (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 7s
3. Remco Evenepoel (Bel) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, at 9s
4. Ion Izagirre (Esp) Cofidis, at 11s
5. Enric Mas (Esp) Movistar, at same time
6. Pello Bilbao (Esp) Bahrain Victorious, at 13s
7. Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 18s
8. Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Jumbo Visma, at 20s
9. Marc Soler (Esp) UAE Team Emirates, at 38s
10. Fernando Barceló (Esp) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, at 1-07

General classification after stage five

1. Remco Evenepoel (Bel) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, in 18-12-29
2. Daniel Felipe Martínez (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 2s
3. Ion Izagirre (Esp) Cofidis, at 21s
4. Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 22s
5. Pello Bilbao (Esp) Bahrain Victorious, at same time
6. Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Jumbo Visma, at 29s
7. Enric Mas (Esp) Movistar, at 37s
8. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo Visma, at 1-05
9. Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, at 1-15
10. Marc Soler (Esp) UAE Team Emirates, at 1-30

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Adam Becket
Adam Becket

Adam is Cycling Weekly’s senior news and feature writer – his greatest love is road racing but as long as he is cycling on tarmac, he's happy. Before joining Cycling Weekly he spent two years writing for Procycling, where he interviewed riders and wrote about racing, speaking to people as varied as Demi Vollering to Philippe Gilbert. Before cycling took over his professional life, he covered ecclesiastical matters at the world’s largest Anglican newspaper and politics at Business Insider. Don't ask how that is related to cycling.