2018 vuelta a espana champion yates in shock after winning first grand tour

17:00    17 Sep 2018

British cyclist Simon Yates won his first Grand Tour title after a largely ceremonial ride into Madrid, Spain in the final stage of the 2018 Vuelta a Espana over the weekend.

The 26-year-old beat Spain's Enric Mas and Colombia's Miguel Angel Lopez to the title. He also completed a clean sweep of British victories in this year's Grand Tours.

Mitchelton-Scott rider followed Chris Froome's victory in the Giro and Geraint Thomas' win in the Tour - the first time that three different riders from the same country had won the three Grand Tours in a single season.

“It feels great. Really unbelievable, I think it’s still sinking in,” Yates told The Telegraph.

“I have no words, it’s just really unbelievable. I like to race on my instinct and I hope that I continue to do so and achieve more big results like today at the Vuelta a Espana.

“The day I won on stage 14 is probably my favourite moment from the race, getting your hands in the air, there’s no feeling like winning a bike race and that will hold a special place, but also the first stage in Andorra,” he continued.

“That was the first day I laid everything on the line to try and win this race and I managed to get a bit of a gap and you start to believe that you may have it, so those two days really stand out for me.

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Yates, who was born in Bury, Greater Manchester, England, finished 21st at this year’s Giro d’Italia in May.

“I came back from real heartbreak from the Giro d’Italia and I am still in shock that I’ve managed to pull it off and it will take a while for it to sink in just what we’ve accomplished,” he explained.

“I get really nervous up on the stage but it was a very special moment that I will cherish forever.”

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