Great news overnight that Simon Clarke has finished the Vuelta a Espana as the winner of the King of the Mountains jersey. Simon claimed the jersey after his win in stage 4, but after being overtaken by long time race leader Joaquin Rodriguez on stage 8 was not expected to challenge the noted climbers for the duration of the three week race.
He was far enough up the leader board however to wear the jersey on most stages, with Rodriguez wearing the leaders’ jersey, and moved back into the lead after another great stage that saw him help team mate Cam Meyer into second place. For the final week, his lead hovered around 2 points, but a great effort in the break on the queen stage saw him build an unbeatable lead over Rodriguez before the monster climb to Bola del Mundo.
Simon successfully navigated the final stage last night to take to the podium as the KOM champion for 2012, the first time an Australian has won the award.
Also dominating in Europe is Clare Dallat. The Irish ex-pat is racing the an Post Ras na mBan, the premier women’s stage race in Ireland. Riding for the Black Rose Racing Team, Clare won the second stage time trial to move into the race lead. She also leads the local County Rider competition with three stages remaining.
Race report: http://www.rasnamban.com/news/50-dallat-dominates-time-trial-and-takes-overall-lead