Trofeo Villa de Noja
Spanish allrounder opens Telefónica-backed squad’s account after impeccable support from her six team-mates in Cantabria’s opener of National Racing Series.
Mavi García crowned a splendid race in the 2018 Trofeo de Ciclismo Villa de Noja -90km and four laps over a rolling course in Cantabria-, first race of the Spanish Racing Series for women, after superb help from her six Movistar team-mates, claiming a win that will be remembered forever as the first one from the squad – officially born just three months ago and already leaving an impression in the world scene.
The Telefónica-backed squad led the bunch for the entire race. Alba Teruel made a big selection at the opening hills and left only 25 riders at the front, including all other six Blues. Control work from Oyarbide, González and Rodríguez and a series of attacks by Merino -happily recovered from her knee injury- and Llamas left room to García’s acceleration into the third climb to La Maza, 40km from the end. There, Mavi started an unstoppable run whose advantage grew up to four minutes over a peloton not working well together. García would win solo with 2’08” over the main field.
The Movistar Team, which also conquered the QOM classification with Mavi and the Sprints competition with Oyarbide -as well as a 4th spot, 3rd within the Elite category, by Alicia González-, was undoubtedly the dominator of an event which acted as a prelude for the Blues’ next challenge abroad: their first trio of Ardennes classics, with the Amstel Gold Race, the Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège (all WWT events).
REACTION / Mavi García:
“I’m really happy, especially considering that this is the Movistar Team’s first ever win. This is a race that I really like, it usually is held first at the Spanish Racing Series calendar, and I claimed the win here two years ago. To be honest, any of my team-mates could have won this race, because all of them rode impressively. With a squad like this, everything becomes easier. When you get one from the team into a break, the rest of the squad can keep an eye on our rivals and it makes easier for you to open a gap. When I went solo I was able to build a huge gap quickly, but I didn’t want to relax – you can have all sorts of problems and it’s not allowed to remain calm until you’ve crossed the finish!
“Leading the Series classification is nice, but it won’t get our minds off the real goal for this season, which is performing strong on international races. Of course we’ll be riding the Spanish Cup’s races, but our priority remains to do well abroad and compete against the best riders in the world. My next goal will be the Ardennes classics – I’ll be riding all three: Amstel, Flèche and Liège – and then get ready for the Emakumeen Bira. It’s finally a WWT event this year and it will be one of my biggest goals in 2018.
“It would have been very difficult for this project to do things even better than right now. We’ve got almost all riders fighting for the best races in Spain until last year aboard, but above that, we’ve got a group with gets on well with each other. The atmosphere is incredible and that makes easier for us to work hard for each other when it’s required. We’re so grateful to Telefónica and the whole Movistar Team for giving us this chance.”
Picture 1-3 (c): Ainara Hernando