Spain’s Rafael Valls won Thursday’s tough Tour of Oman fourth stage with a summit finish on the Green Mountain to take the overall lead. American Tejay Van Garderen came home second 5sec adrift with Spaniard Alejandro Valverde, at 19sec, completing the podium.
“I didn’t expect to win at all, especially with the riders left in the final group, and I thought it was practically impossible for me to win. “Van Garderen is one of the riders who can finish in the top five in the Tour de France and to beat him is incredible,” added the jubilent Valls, who picked up only his second career stage win and first since the Tour of San Luis five years ago. “I had four difficult years, with a lot of accidents but I never lost hope. I worked hard during the winter and arrived in better condition than ever.” added the 27-year-old.
Results Stage 4 1. Rafael Valls (ESP/LAM) 5hr 46min 48sec 2. Tejay Van Garderen (USA/BMC) at 05 3. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/MOV) 19
General Classification 1. Rafael Valls (ESP/LAM) 18hr 05min 44sec 2. Tejay Van Garderen (USA/BMC) at 09 3. Alejandro Valverde (ESP/MOV) 19