BALCON DE BIZKAIA, Spain (AP) — Simon Yates lost a few seconds of his Spanish Vuelta lead on a difficult mountain stage won by Michael Woods on Wednesday.
Woods outlasted the field in a 157-kilometer (97.5-mile) 17th stage that finished with a tough climb up Balcon de Bizkaia in Basque Country. The Canadian rider crossed the line five seconds in front of Dylan Teuns and 10 seconds ahead of David de la Cruz.
Yates' gap to Alejandro Valverde was cut from 33 seconds to 25 seconds after a solid climb by the veteran Spaniard.
Enric Mas also had a good run and moved up to third place overall, 1 minute, 22 seconds behind Yates.
No changes at the top are expected on Thursday, when riders will face a flat 186.1-kilometer (115.6-mile) stage from Ejea de los Caballeros to Lleida in northeastern Spain.
The three-week Grand Tour race ends Sunday in Madrid.