Cycling: Kiwi George Bennett climbs among Vuelta a Espana leaders on hill stage

Kiwi George Bennett has re-entered the Vuelta a Espana top 10, with a strong ride over the 159.7km hill stage from Vitoria-Gasteiz to Villanueva de Valdegovia.

Part of a breakaway from the main peloton, Bennett finished 14th on the stage, 13 seconds behind Canadian winner Michael Woods. The performance saw him improve three spots on general classification, now 2m 39s adrift of overall race leader Richard Carapaz of Ecuador. 

Woods, who has run a sub-four minute mile on the track, claimed a second career win on the the Spanish tour, attacking from a five-man leading group, 1.5km from the finish, to beat Spaniards Omar Fraile and Alejandro Valverde, who were second and third respectively.

Carapaz retained the red jersey, as he crossed the line among the major contenders, 56s off the pace. He still leads Briton Hugh Carthy by 18 seconds and Irishman Dan Martin by 20, as 2009 champion Valverde moved up to ninth.

In an explosive start to the stage, a large breakaway took shape and Woods, whose general classification hopes ended with a crash in the first stage, attacked three kilometres from the top of the last climb, the Puerto de Orduna.

Woods was caught in the descent by Valverde, Fraile, and Frenchmen Guillaume Martin and Nans Peters, but the Canadian had gas left in the tank in the finale, attacking decisively with nobody able to get into his slipstream with the 1km mark in sight.

The eighth stage is a 164km mountain ride from Logrono to the Alto de Moncalvillo.