Spanish favorite Pereiro quits home race with illness


CERLER, Spain — Spanish pre-race favorite Oscar Pereiro abandoned the Tour of Spain during stage nine from Huesca on Sunday, the race’s Web site ( reported.

The Caisse D’Epargne rider has been suffering from a stomach virus for three days.

Pereiro, second in the Tour de France in 2006, was dropped early on stage nine from the main bunch and quit after 90 kilometres of racing. He had been lying 15th overall.

The race is being led by Belgian Stijn Devolder. It ends in Madrid on Sept. 23.