Mavi García takes stage 2 of the Vuelta Andalucía Elite Women

Mavi García claimed victory in the second stage of the Vuelta Andalucía Elite Women, securing her first win in nearly a year. The reigning Spanish National Champion ended an 11-month drought under the scorching southern Spanish sun, taking the yellow jersey from her teammate Silke Smulders who won yesterday’s opening stage.

The 147-kilometre stage from Arjona to Otura featured just one categorised climb, the Puerto del Castillo, which stands at 6.4 km with a 4.7% gradient. However, the final stretch was a challenging drag to the finish. Silke Smulders, who started the day as the overall leader after her win in the opening stage, found herself in a day of relentless action.

Early in the race, a breakaway of two riders formed but was soon joined by nine more, including Marit Raaijmakers, Anouska Koster, García, Wyllie, and Smulders. Giorgia Vetorello made a solo attempt but was caught after a few kilometres, and the race progressed with eleven riders heading towards the finale.

As the race approached Otura, the peloton started to close in on the breakaway, reducing the gap from two minutes to just forty seconds. The pace slowed down the chase, allowing the front riders to maintain their lead. In the final kilometres, Tour de Normandie winner Mie Bjørndal Ottestad, García, and Smulders proved to be the strongest, breaking away from the rest.

Reflecting on her win, García said, “It was a long, hard, and very hot day! Even for me! Yesterday was the day for Silke and today it was for me. I attacked 10km to go and she came with me. It was easier for us with two and I attacked again when we were 3km from the finish. Silke let the other girl work until she attacked at the end and was able to get second place. I’m very happy to take this win. It’s my first for Liv AlUla Jayco, so it is special.”

In the final push to the finish, García created a gap that Ottestad couldn’t close. García took the stage win, while Smulders, coming in second, fell to second place overall in the general classification. García’s win not only secured the stage but also the leader’s yellow jersey.

García, Smulders, and their teammate Ella Wylie now hold the top three spots in the general classification. García leads by 19 seconds over Smulders, with Wylie 3:25 behind. Ottestad is the highest-placed non-Liv rider, 4:43 behind García. The race continues on Friday in Málaga with another challenging stage.

2024 Vuelta Andalucia Ruta del Sol Women Stage 2 result

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