Trofeo Bajo Andarax
Lorena Llamas recorded back-to-back wins in the Copa de España, leading Mavi García home at the rain lashed Trofeo Bajo Andarax for 1-2 for Movistar Team. The squad took the race on from the outset with Paula Patiño and Lourdes Oyarbide attacking early on, before Llamas broke clear on the slopes of Las Parricas with Oyarbide for company. Lorena reached the final climb with an advantage of over two minutes and soloed to the line, with García following her home in second.
It was a victory by the whole team – we really worked well together in this race. We never surrendered and they never got us back. It’s my second victory so far this season, I feel so strong and confident and I want to profit from this moment. Also, taking such a victory in a tough day, with strong winds, rain – it’s a boost of confidence!
Volta a Catalunya
A lively closing stage of the Volta a Catalunya saw Nairo Quintana in aggressive form on the circuit in and around Barcelona’s Montjuïc hills. Hitting out with 5 laps / 35km to go, Nairo was joined by Carlos Verona and opened up a gap of 30s on the GC contenders, but were caught by an accelerating bunch of favourites. Nairo and Alejandro Valverde both finished within the top ten on GC, in fourth and tenth respectively. The only downside from the race was Marc Soler being forced to withdraw after a pile-up which later scans confirmed that the young Catalan rider had suffered a non-displaced fracture to his scaphoid.
Gent – Wevelgem
Crosswinds played havoc in the men’s edition of Gent-Wevelgem as the opening two hours covered 100km of frenetic racing in Belgium. Movistar Team’s Jasha Sütterlin and Carlos Barbero made it safely through the gravel sections and cobbled climbs into the final selection of thrity, with Barbero able to contesting the sprint, finishing in a decent 12th place.
In the women’s edition, Roxane Fournier finished in 19th for Movistar Team, with Bigla’s Julie Leth just behind in 20th
Driedaagse Brugge – De Panne
Now in its second year on the Women’s WorldTour calendar the 151km-long course started in Bruges and proceeded across largely flat roads until it reached a finishing circuit in De Panne. As expected, the race ended in a sprint finish with Movistar Team’s Roxanne Fournier in 11th and Julie Leth in 12th.
In the men’s running of the race, Jasha Sütterlin was key instigator of an early break that held on out front until the final 10km before being closed down by a peloton keen on a bunch sprint.
Coppi e Bartali
Mikel Landa marked his comeback from injury with a strong showing at Settimana Coppi e Bartali in Italy, winning stage two and finishing just off the final podium in fourth spot. The Basque rider claimed his win with a classic 1-2, following an earlier move by Rubén Fernández which saw him pass through the KoM at the top of Monte Tiffi with a 40s advantage that he was able to defend on the uphill finish on the cobblestones of Sogliano al Rubicone.
E3 BinckBank Classic
Jaime Castrillo and Jasha Sütterlin were active in the E3 BinckBank Classic, with Castrillo in the early break and Sütterlin putting in a huge effort to pursue Bob Jungels (Deceuninck-QuickStep) as he bridged to the breakaway. Jasha picked up a valuable top ten finish in ninth.
Endura World Series Tasmania
The EWS circus hopped over to Tasmania for the second round of the 2019 series with Ella Connoly again impressing in the pro ranks with an 11th place overall.