Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) won stage 8 of the Vuelta atop the Collada de la Gallina in Andorra, snatching away what looked to be a sure victory for Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank). Race leader Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) finished second, as he and Valverde passed Contador within sight of the finish line. Sky's Chris Froome was unable to keep up in the last few hundred meters, finishing 15 seconds down.

Rodriguez maintained his overall lead, followed by Froome and Contador. Valverde moved up to fourth while Robert Gesink of Rabobank dropped to fifth.

The finale proved to be an exchange of blows by the top four riders as they charged up the final climb. Froome did much of the early pace-making, as the three Spaniards were happy to let him do the bulk of the work. The Englishman attacked out of a curve inside the final kilometer, but Contador countered it with an explosive acceleration of his own. It looked as if he was going to take a comfortable win, but when he looked back with less than 100 meters to go, he saw his two countrymen rapidly approaching. They were both able to whip around him in the final meters.

Story taken from Cycling News