Ottawa cyclist Michael Woods wins 7th stage of Spanish Vuelte race

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    Ottawa cyclist Michael Woods won the seventh stage of the Spanish Vuelta on Tuesday, finishing the hilly 159.7-kilometre route from Vitoria-Gasteiz to Valdegovia in three hours 48 minutes 16 seconds.

    Woods, who finished second in Sunday’s sixth stage, improved to 48th overall with the win.

    The EF Pro Cycling rider accelerated in the final climb of the day and outraced Spanish cyclists Omar Fraile (Astana) and Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) to take his second La Vuelta stage win.

    Ecuador’s Richard Carapaz held on to the overall leader’s red jersey. He leads Britain’s Hugh John Carthy by 18 seconds.

    Woods also won a stage in the 2018 edition of the race, when he joined Ryder Hesjedal as the only Canadians to claim a stage in the Vuelta, traditionally the third Grand Tour race on the calendar.

    An emotional Woods outlasted the field in a demanding 157-kilometre Stage 17 of the 2018 Vuelta, dedicating the win to his stillborn son, who died earlier in the year when his wife was 37 weeks pregnant. They have since celebrated the birth of daughter Max (Maxine).

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