Chris Froome says that following up July's overall win at the Tour de France with victory at the Vuelta ranks as the high point of his career so far.
By sealing his overall win at the Spanish Grand Tour in Madrid yesterday, The Team Sky rider became just the third man ever to win both races in the same year.
The other two riders to have done so were Jacques Anquetil in 1963 and Bernard Hinault in 1978, when the Vuelta took place in April and May, making Froome's achievement in clinching it after the Tour unique.
Ahead of this year’s Vuelta, Froome had spoken of his “unfinished business” at a race where he has finished second on three previous occasions.
Froome, who is the first British winner of the Spanish Grand Tour, also won the points and combination jerseys.
After Saturday's stage, which finished on the Angliru and effectively guaranteed his victory ahead of yesterday's procession into Madrid, Froome said: "It’s an amazing feeling. The team has just been incredible over the last few months.
"It’s meant so much to me, the way they have supported us. I owe a massive thank you to all my teammates."
He continued: "I have to say that is probably the toughest Grand Tour I’ve ever ridden.
"There was something different happening every day. I’ve had good days and then I’ve been lying on the ground, bleeding, thinking my race might be over.
"I’s been a rollercoaster – absolutely relentless. It’s a relief now to finish and to be getting to Madrid."
Following yesterday's finale, he said: "I think it probably is my greatest achievement, being the first person to win the Tour de France and then go on to win the Vuelta."
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.