Saxo-Tinkoff rider Michael Morkov snatched stage six of the Vuelta a Espana after Germany's Tony Martin had led for almost the entirety of the 175-kilometre stage.

Martin, the world time-trial champion, launched a solo effort from the start which looked like paying off for his Omega Pharma-QuickStep team until he was caught in the closing metres.

Italian Fabien Cancellara (RadioShack-Leopard) led the chase, before Morkov burst past him on the line, with Maximiliano Richeze (Lampre) taking second and Cancellara third.

Ireland’s Nicolas Roche (Saxo-Tinkoff) finished in 33rd, while compatriot and cousin Dan Martin (Garmin-Sharp) was 94th across the finish line. Both riders finished in the same time as Morkov.

There was no change at the top of the leaderboard, with Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) retaining the red jersey with a three-second lead over Chris Homer (RadioShack), with Roche eight seconds behind the overall leader. 

Martin lies in 31st position, one minute and 47 minutes behind Nibali.