Joaquim Rodriguez saw his lead of the Vuelta a Espana cut to a single second after today's 11th stage time-trial in west Galicia.
Alberto Contador produced the second best time of the day, behind surprise winner Fredrik Kessiakoff, to elevate him up to second and just behind the red jersey.
Team Sky's Chris Froome was third quickest on the hilly 39.4km course from Cambados to Pontevedrato to remain in contention 16 seconds off the pace.
Ireland's Nicolas Roche finished 21st on the stage, 2:21 behind Kessiakoff and remains in seventh place overall.
Rodriguez had feared the chasing pack would close on him today but he produced a gutsy performance to cross in the seventh best time and cling onto his lead.
Kessiakoff claimed the stage win after posting a time of 52mins 36secs with Contador 17s adrift.