Setmana Valenciana (st. 1)
Blues perform strong in Valencia opener, with four of its riders -Alicia, Mavi García (14th), Lorena Llamas and Eider Merino- inside the 20-rider group after Barx climb.
The beginning of a great story and already a top result and performance in their first. The Movistar Team did a great job at the start of the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana -118km on stage one, from Rótova to Gandía-, with strong overall level, some attacks and even a brilliant 4th place, against some of the world’s best, by Alicia González.
The 22-year-old from Asturias was already part of a top-level pursuit group, alongside Mavi García -who had tried a brief attack into the descent of the Alto de Barxeta (Cat-3)-, of a duo made by Ashleigh Moolman (CBT) and Kasia Niewiadoma (CSR), which had gained half a minute’s advantage at the top of the Alto de Barx (Cat-2). Later on, the chase started with collaboration from Lorena Llamas and Eider Merino, who worked hard to bring the leaders back and boosted Alicia’s chances in dio alas a las opciones al sprint de Alicia.
At the sprint, only winner Hannah Barnes (CSR), Moolman and third-placed Marta Bastianelli (ALE) bested González, who took the first ever top-ten finish for a Movistar Team which starts their UCI Women’s adventure on a high note. More emotions are expected on Friday’s stage two from Castellón to Villarreal (115km), the route including the race’s hardest climb, the Desierto de las Palmas (Cat-1), albeit 40km away from the finish.