"I looked back with 150 meters to go and I could see him coming. I…
If Magnus Cort was the happiest rider after today’s breathtaking stage at La Vuelta — Jens Keukeleire was a close second.
“I was really emotional when I saw what Jens did for Magnus, especially after what happened yesterday,” said Sport Director Juanma Garate.
Yesterday, Cort came so close to winning his second stage at the grand tour of Spain. No one worked harder than him throughout stage 11 — but wasn’t enough to get the win.
The Danish pro may have come up short, yet it became increasingly evident that despite some bad luck yesterday, Cort had his eyes set on the win for stage 12. An epic finale saw him and his teammate Keukeleire put on a spectacular display of skill, tenacity, and teamwork. Racing really doesn’t get much better than what we saw at the Vuelta today.
“I’m happy that the team wants to support me on these types of stages. I was able to sit in the back and relax and not be in the breakaway for most of the race,” said Cort.
The Dane will be the first to acknowledge that this victory isn’t just his. “In the end, Jens really did an amazing job delivering me to the sprint,” added Cort.
Keukeleire said that in the last ten kilometers, he talked with Magnus about how they would handle the sprint. “I told him I felt good and that I could go a long way for him,” said Keukeleire. “I don’t often get emotional, but I got emotional after this one. I always got along with Magnus really well, so to help him today was so nice and means a lot to me. To be at this level and to be in a final like this — I’m just really happy with the day.”
Keukeleire, Garate, and the rest of the team swiftly changed their plans halfway through the race after they saw how well Cort was riding. “Everything went perfect. It’s the kind of day you write on paper what you want to do and in the end everything comes through. It was amazing,” said Garate.
At the finish, a commentator asked Cort if he realized the magnitude of what he’s achieving at this year’s Vuelta. He joins the likes of Primoz Roglic and Jasper Philipsen who are the only riders who also have two stage wins so far at this year’s event. And none of these guys look like they are slowing down any time soon.
“No one in the peloton can really do what Magnus has done these past few days,” said Garate.
This marks Cort’s fourth stage win at the Vuelta. Back in 2016, Cort had won two stages and is now quickly becoming some sort of legend at the race.
“It’s nice to get more Spanish fans, I didn’t get the win yesterday, but I still got so many nice messages from people,” said Cort.
He’ll surely be getting even more messages after this achievement. Congratulations to Magnus and the team on a perfectly executed day.