September 10, 2016 / 4:31 PM / 3 years ago

Cycling: Quintana on brink of winning Vuelta

Cycling - The Tour de France cycling race - The 178-km (110.6 miles) Stage 12 from Montpellier to Chalet-Reynard - 14/07/2016 - Movistar Team rider Nairo Quintana of Colombia reacts after the finish line. REUTERS/Juan Medina

MADRID (Reuters) - Nairo Quintana effectively clinched his first Tour of Spain title after holding off Chris Froome in Saturday’s decisive mountain stage.

The Colombian has not officially won the race yet but Sunday’s sprint stage is virtually a formality and the Movistar rider’s time of five hours 23 minutes 44 seconds, which enabled him to finish 10th in stage 20, kept him ahead of Team Sky’s Froome.

The Briton had cut his deficit on Colombian Quintana after a sensational display in Friday’s individual time trial, but was unable to dethrone his rival on the 193.2km ride from Benidor to Alto de Aitana.

France’s Pierre-Roger Latour won the stage in a time of five hours 19 minutes 41 seconds. 

Reporting by Rik Sharma, editing by Ed Osmond

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