Elisa Balsamo Clinches Victory in Setmana Ciclista Valenciana Finale

On Sunday, Elisa Balsamo secured a remarkable triumph in the concluding stage of the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana, showcasing her stand-out sprinting abilities over the challenging 118-kilometre route through Valencia’s streets. This triumph marked her second consecutive stage win, following her earlier success in the opening stage. Despite her impressive individual performance, the overall victory went to Marlen Reusser of SD Worx-Protime, who maintained her lead in the general classification throughout the race.

The stage unfolded between Sagunt and Valencia city, with a predominantly flat route interrupted by the ascent of L’Oronet, a category two climb positioned approximately thirty kilometres from the finish line. The inclusion of this climb added an element of difficulty to the stage, potentially favouring breakaway attempts and providing opportunities for climbers to gain an advantage.

Alice Wood and Aileen Schweikart

Before the start of the stage, Marlen Reusser was the favourite to secure the overall victory, holding a small but tough-to-overcome lead over her nearest rivals, Kasia Niewiadoma and teammate Niamh Fisher-Black. Despite the time gaps, the riders remained vigilant, knowing that any unforeseen incidents or attacks could alter the race dynamics.

As the peloton set off from Sagunt, the early kilometres passed relatively calmly, with no significant attacks or breakaways. However, as the race unfolded, two riders, Alice Wood of Great Britain and Aileen Schweikart from Germany launched a daring breakaway attempt, establishing a lead over the chasing peloton. Despite their efforts, the peloton remained attentive, steadily reeling in the escapees as they approached the critical climbs of the day.

The decisive moment of the stage came on the slopes of L’Oronet, where Mavi García initiated a solo attack in a bid to shake up the race. However, the climb failed to produce any major splits in the peloton, allowing the main contenders to regroup and prepare for the fast-paced finale.

In the closing kilometres, the sprinter teams moved to the front, positioning their riders for the anticipated bunch sprint. Despite the intense competition and tactical manoeuvring, Elisa Balsamo demonstrated her exceptional speed and timing, launching a powerful sprint in the final stretch to cross the line first, securing her second stage victory of the race.

Reflecting on her triumph, Balsamo expressed gratitude to her teammates for their support throughout the race, emphasising the importance of teamwork in achieving success in professional cycling. She also praised the competitive spirit of her rivals, acknowledging the fierce competition they provided throughout the race.

2024 Setmana Ciclista Valenciana Stage 4 result

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2024 Setmana Ciclista Valenciana GC result

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