Froome has work to do in Vuelta a Espana
Alexandre Geniez won stage three of the Vuelta a Espana as Team Sky handed over the race leader's red jersey to Spaniard Ruben Fernandez of Movistar.
Frenchman Geniez, racing for FDJ, took victory atop the brutal Mirador de Ezaro as the sole survivor of the day's breakaway.
Sky had held the red jersey after each of the opening two stages, first through Peter Kennaugh and then Michal Kwiatkowski, but Fernandez's second place, 21 seconds behind Geniez, was enough for him to take red in his debut Vuelta.
Tour de France winner Chris Froome looked to have been dropped on the final climb - just 1.8km long but at brutal gradients - but recovered for fourth, five seconds down.
That means Fernandez leads overall by seven seconds from Valverde, with Froome third, 11 seconds down.