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Valverde wins 5th stage, Porte takes overall lead of Volta a Catalunya


VALLS, Spain — Alejandro Valverde won the fifth stage of the Volta a Catalunya on Friday, while Richie Porte took the lead of the seven-day race.

The Movistar rider claimed his second stage win of this edition after completing the 195-kilometer (121-mile) mainly downhill ride from Alp to Valls five seconds ahead of his nearest chasers.

Valverde opened a gap ahead of a small group that included Porte and Alberto Contador on an ascent with 10 kilometers left. Heavy winds and work by Movistar and Sky to push the pace had already left then overall leader Bart De Clercq behind.

"We knew there was going to be some wind in the finale, the whole team was attentive and always riding on the front," Valverde said. "We all had an interest to leave the rivals behind. We really pushed at 100 percent. When I saw a gap, I dug in, and I was able to leave them behind and snatch those five more seconds."

Porte, riding for Sky, finished the day with a five-second lead over Domenico Pozzovivo in the overall standings.

Contador is next at seven seconds behind, while Valverde is fourth at 16 seconds back.

Saturday's sixth stage is a 194.1-kilometer (120.6-mile) ride from Cervera to Port Aventura.

The race finishes in Barcelona on Sunday.

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