Chris Froome sits in a strong second position overall after stage 10 heading into the crucial Vuelta a Espana time trial.
A show of strength and unity from Team Sky saw the squad hit the front inside the final 15 kilometres, keeping the pace high to ensure Froome was positioned well. A superb effort saw the team string out the bunch on the fast Galician run-in.
The bunch finish saw Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) maintain an impressive 53-second lead heading into Wednesday’s, with Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) a further seven seconds behind Froome.
At the line it was John Degenkolb who made it four sprint wins from four at the Vuelta as he took victory on stage 10 in Sanxenxo.
Nacer Bouhanni (FDJ-BigMat) looked to be in the perfect position in the final metres in the wheel of his rival, yet the French national champion had to settle for second spot ahead of Daniele Bennati (RadioShack-Nissan). Ben Swift placed ninth for Team Sky.
Calm before the storm
190 kilometres of racing on the day saw the peloton snake their way along the Galician coast, safely cresting the only significant climb of the day after just 14.5km.
Two riders went away inside the opening kilometre, Spanish pairing Adrian Palomares (Andalucia) and Javier Aramendia (Caja Rural) making tracks to the tune of 6:42 before the peloton began to get its act together.
With just two riders out front the day was easy to control, the peloton helping to keep the duo at arm’s length with Argos-Shimano and Orica-GreenEDGE helping with the pace-setting duties.
The day provided a perfect test for GC favourites looking to save energy ahead of stage 11 and 39.4km of time trialling against the clock.
Up front the lead pair found themselves all but caught first time across the line in Sanxenxo before finally being caught with 33km to go.
Orica-GreenEDGE looked to string things out before, with 15km to go, Team Sky arrived on the front to take it up ahead of the inevitable sprint finish.
1 John Degenkolb (Ger) Argos-Shimano 4:47:24
2 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat
3 Daniele Bennati (Ita) Radioshack-Nissan
4 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team
5 Manuel Antonio Leal Cardoso (Por) Caja Rural
6 Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
7 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Vacansoleil-Dcm Pro Cycling Team
8 Davide Vigano (Ita) Lampre - ISD
9 Ben Swift (GBr) Sky Procycling
10 Elia Viviani (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
38 Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling
General Classification after stage 10
1 Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha Team 39:32:23
2 Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:00:53
3 Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Saxo Bank - Tinkoff Bank 0:01:00
4 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:07
5 Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:02:01
6 Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha Team 0:02:08
7 Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale 0:02:34
8 Igor Anton (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 0:03:07
9 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:03:18
10 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:03:27