George Bennett stars in Spain


Nelson cyclist George Bennett showed his climbing skills to finish fourth on the demanding 16th stage of the Vuelta a España on Tuesday.
After spending a day in the break, the team Lotto NL Jumbo New Zealander finished fourth in what was regarded as the second biggest stage of the three week tour through Spain.
George finished the 185km stage that featured a climb with a 20 per cent gradient in 5 hours 52 minutes 38 seconds.
“I targeted this stage months ago,” George says on his team’s Facebook page. “I’m satisfied with the fact that I was there to fight for the win, but obviously, I’m disappointed that I didn’t actually win.
“Frank Schleck was just too strong, though. I was chasing full gas to get them back, but it wasn’t enough. However, stuff like this makes you stronger.”
Lotto NL Jumbo sports director Merijn Zeeman says “George fought for what he is worth and got involved in the battle for the stage win. He is still a young rider and has done pretty well, especially when you look at today’s profile.
Wednesday is a rest day.