Spanish veteran Alejandro Valverde claimed his fourth Tour of Andalusia victory by winning Sunday’s fifth and final stage to edge out American Tejay van Garderen.

Valverde was too strong on the category one climb to the end of the 171km stage from San Roque to Alto Penas Blancas to finish 36 seconds clear of Dutchman Bauke Mollema, with the Poland’s Rafael Majka a further six seconds back in third.

Van Garderen was fourth, 48 seconds back, to surrender the 22-second lead he had over Valverde after winning the individual time trial on Saturday, but did enough for second overall.

Mollema’s surge was enough to earn him third place in the overall standings.

“This is the best of my four victories here,” Valverde told the Team Movistar website.

“The other three were great, but this was the most difficult.

“We knew we had to force the pace and we took advantage of the fact there were plenty of teams who wanted a quick race to try and dislodge Van Garderen.” – Agence France-Presse

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