Philipsen wins at Vuelta as Roglic leads

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Belgian rider Jasper Philipsen won a long, wet and windy 15th stage at the Vuelta a Espana while Primoz Roglic held on to his overall lead with just two more competitive days of racing left.

Philipsen earned his first stage win in a grand tour, powering ahead of the pack near the end of the race's longest stage of 230 kilometres through winding, wooded terrain in northwest Spain.

"I have been waiting all the Vuelta for the right moment and today was more than I expected," Philipsen said after embracing his UAE Team Emirates teammates and race director.

"The headwind all day made it really hard on the front group ... I can enjoy this moment and try to finish my first grand tour. I am super proud now."

The 22-year-old crossed the finish line in 6 hours 22 minutes, ahead of Pascal Ackermann and Jannik Steimle in the uphill sprint finish, while Mitchelton-Scott's New Zealand rider Dion Smith finished fifth amid the fragmented field just behind.

Slovenian Roglic, the defending champion, maintained his 42-second lead over Ecuador's Richard Carapaz as the race closes in on Sunday's ceremonial arrival in Madrid. Britain's Hugh Carthy is third, 47 seconds behind.

On Friday, the race moves to central Spain as it starts its final approach to the capital. Stage 16 takes riders over 162 kilometres of hills from Salamanca to Ciudad Rodrigo before Saturday's decisive mountain stage.