Vuelta a Espana: Chris Froome says 2016 has been his best year yet
By Matt Westby
Last Updated: 12/09/16 12:46pm
Chris Froome described 2016 as his “most successful season to date” after finishing runner-up to Nairo Quintana at the Vuelta a Espana.
It was the third time he has finished second at the race and followed overall victories at the Criterium du Dauphine in June and Tour de France in July, plus a bronze medal in the Olympic Games time trial in August.
Froome has claimed 10 wins in total this year, including two stages victories at both the Tour and Vuelta and one each at the Dauphine and Tour de Romandie.
Quintana seals Vuelta victory
Nairo Quintana and Chris Froome sealed first and second places overall at the Vuelta a Espana
He told Eurosport: "I came here hoping for the victory, hoping to fight for the win, and that is what I did. I fought all the way, I gave it everything I had, so no regrets.
"I'm thrilled with how this season has gone. It really has been the most successful season I have had to date.
"But at the same time, it's really shown me that it is possible to win two Grand Tours in one season and gives me a lot of motivation for the future. Maybe that is something I can target next year."
Froome's challenge for victory at the Vuelta effectively collapsed on stage 15, when he was caught out by a surprise early attack and lost 2min 43sec to Quintana.
It was a reverse of the 2015 Tour de France, when Quintana lost 1min 28sec to Froome on stage two after being caught on the wrong side of a split in the peloton and went on to lose the race to the Briton by just 1min 12sec.
Froome added: "I learnt a big lesson on stage 15. We got caught out early on, in the first 10-15km of the race, and that potentially cost us the victory. It's an important lesson we learnt.
"The tides can always change. If you look at the Tour in 2015, when the split happened, we were on the front side of that and I gained a minute and a half on Nairo there and it can be argued that I won the Tour because of that.
"The same can be said for Nairo's victory here. That's racing, that's sport, that's one of the things that makes cycling so special. It can just change in the blink of an eye and it's unpredictable."