Stage 19 was the penultimate stage of the Vuelta a Espana – a rolling time trial of 37km from Chabia to Calpe.
Chris Froome started the day 3mins 37secs behind Nairo Quintana.
But time trials are a specialty for the Team Sky rider, who won bronze at the Olympic Games in the discipline.
Froome rode imperiously to claw back 2mins 16secs from the race leader.
Quintana was under pressure but held firm. The Columbian is still the favourite to win the Vuelta despite seeing his lead shrink to 1min 21secs.
Froome has one last chance to beat his rival on Saturday’s 193km, 20th stage, from Benidorm to Alto de Altana, with a mountain-top finish.
Another big gainer of the day was Three-time Vuelta winner Alberto Contador.
The Spaniard finished the stage eighth to unseat the Columbian Esteban Chaves for the third spot on the podium.