Joey Rosskopf wins Sprint Especiales in Mallorca finale – Rally Cycling

Rally Cycling finished this year’s Challenge Mallorca on a high. During the fourth and final race, Trofeo Alcudia, the team went on the offensive early to force the day’s breakaway. Escaping with teammate Kyle Murphy, Joey Rosskopf proceeded to win both Sprint Especiales points in the 170km sprinter-friendly race ahead of a charging peloton.

Getting on the podium for any reason is always nice so I’ll take what I can get,” said Rosskopf. “It was just a really fun day out there with the team. Especially double-teaming the break with Kyle Murphy. Everyone was racing with nothing to lose and giving it their all on our last day in Mallorca.”

The first three days of Challenge Mallorca were made for the climbers and as such the team did not travel to the race with a fastman.

“Without a pure sprinter in the race, the plan for the day was to put some guys in the break to go after the intermediate prizes,” added Rosskopf. “To win both sprint points I launched early attacks from a few kilometers out and both times Kyle played anchor by following any subsequent chase efforts from the other guys in the break.”

Rosskopf’s impressive ride came hot on the heels of Gavin Mannion’s sixth-place finish in the monumentally-hilly Trofeo Andratx the day before.

“I’m happy with the result and to build some momentum,” said Mannion. “A few guys snuck away but I was able to race to third from the lead group. It’s been a tough year with a lot of missed chances and close calls so it feels nice to have something concrete and to know that a podium was within reach.”

With half of the men’s team racing in France’s Tro-Bro Léon and then heading to the Tour du Finistère on May 22, the majority of the Mallorca crew will head to mainland Spain for Vuelta Murcia on May 23. Race highlights from the entire Challenge Mallorca are available to watch online at GCN+.

Trofeo Alcudia Sprint Especiales results
1 ROSSKOPF Joey Rally Cycling 6 pts

Trofeo Andratx results
1 ANACONA Winner Team Arkéa Samsic  4:04:30
2 LAENGEN Vegard Stake UAE-Team Emirates  0:10
3 ITURRIA Mikel Euskaltel – Euskadi  0:13
4 HERRADA Jesús Cofidis, Solutions Crédits  1:34
5 HERREGODTS Rune Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise  1:39
6 MANNION Gavin Rally Cycling  ”
7 CHEVALIER Maxime B&B Hotels p/b KTM  ”
8 ZIMMERMANN Georg Intermarché – Wanty – Gobert Matériaux  ”
9 BELLICAUD Jeremy Intermarché – Wanty – Gobert Matériaux  ”
10 BENNETT Sean Team Qhubeka ASSOS  1:44

— Tom Soladay to rallycycling.com

Tour de Hongrie Queen Stage the decider ahead of Sunday’s finale in Budapest

Head sports director Massimo Podenzana

“Everyone was waiting for today to see the race explode for the GC battle on the climbs and it happened. After the early break was caught the main contenders started to move. We wanted to try and stay with the front group with David and Peter, but after Mehdi not starting due to a broken collarbone and Andrea feeling the effects of yesterday’s crash, it was difficult to give them full support.”

“Nevertheless, the guys gave it everything and it was only on the last climb that they lost contact with the leading group as the race split apart. Those moves by the overall contenders all but decided the GC and tomorrow’s short stage in Budapest will be a fast one, over pretty quickly and certainly end in a sprint.”

“It was hard for our guys today and Andrea went deep trying to help Peter on the last climb, so we will see if he can recover a little to try again tomorrow in the sprint.”

Peter Kusztor

To be completely open and honest…I couldn’t go with the last attacks. It was super-fast and aggressive. We were there going into the last 10 kilometers, but as soon as the gradient stiffened and the accelerations got stronger, we fell back.”

“I have to thank the guys, because they worked for me today, especially Andrea as he was there with me right until the end and our teamwork was very good, but we couldn’t do more.”

— tnn to www.teamnovonordisk.com

Doebel-Hickok snatches QOM in Valenciana finale, Franz wins Points – Rally Cycling

Rally Cycling came out swinging in their first stage race of the season with Krista Doebel-Hickok tearing up the climbs to win the QOM competition on the final stage of the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana. Doebel-Hickok’s performance comes hot on the heels of teammate Heidi Franz who pulled on the Best Sprinter’s jersey on stage 3 to make it two classification wins for the team.

I feel proud, encouraged, and excited for what’s to come,” said Doebel-Hickok. “I’ve been racing to win. Whether that’s the stage on Friday or the jersey today. When I lost time on the opening day due to a mechanical I shifted my focus and chased the mountains classification. I’ll enjoy this jersey for a few days and then we’re back at it on Thursday.”

Franz, who featured in the breakaway on three of four stages, found renewed energy while sporting the pink Sprinter’s jersey on the final day to Alicante.

It was so special to wear pink today and I think it gave me some extra superpowers,” said Franz. “I managed to chase back to the peloton about four different times after being dropped on the climbs to help support Krista and Katie with bottles. I think the team really came together this week and supported each other with all the highs and lows. It’ll just keep getting better as the season progresses and I’m excited to be part of it.”

Both Franz and Doebel-Hickok spoke about their teammates following the final stage as four of them were caught up in a large wreck on stage 3. Holly Breck and Leigh Ann Ganzar decided not to start on Sunday as a result of their injuries while sprinter Olivia Ray was forced to abandon on the roadside due to a fractured fibula.

“The ladies had some really bad luck but they rode strong as a unit this week and proved they can fight hard in the Euro peloton,” said Kiesanowski. “Winning the sprint and mountains jerseys at this tour is a big deal. Lots of teamwork and hard work paying off after constantly animating the race from the get-go. I’m really proud of them.”

Next up is a series of Spanish one-days starting with the Emakumeen Nafarroako Classic on May 13.

Stage 4 results
1 ŽIGART Urška Team BikeExchange  3:30:13
2 FIDANZA Arianna Team BikeExchange  0:05
3 GUTIÉRREZ Sheyla Movistar Team  ”
4 ALONSO Sandra Bizkaia Durango ”
5 SOTO Catalina Anais NXTG Racing  ”
6 KLEIN Lisa Canyon SRAM Racing ”
7 TOMASI Laura Alé BTC Ljubljana  ”
8 SILVESTRI Debora Top Girls Fassa Bortolo  ”
9 BORGHESI Letizia Aromitalia – Basso Bikes – Vaiano ”
10 RODRÍGUEZ Sofia Sopela Women’s Team ”
11 BORGSTRÖM Julia NXTG Racing ”
12 VAN VLEUTEN Annemiek Movistar Team ”
13 AALERUD Katrine Movistar Team ”
14 ERASO Idoia Laboral Kutxa Fundación Euskadi ”
15 BIRYUKOVA Julia ”
16 GARCÍA Mavi Alé BTC Ljubljana ”
17 KERN Špela Massi – Tactic Women Team ”
18 CLOUSE Katie Rally Cycling Women
19 ANDRES Michelle Andy Schleck – CP NVST – Immo Losch ”
20 BENITO Mireia Massi – Tactic Women Team ”

Final QOM classification
1 DOEBEL-HICKOK Kristabel Rally Cycling Women 23
2 ENSING Janneke Team BikeExchange 21
3 SHAPIRA Omer Canyon SRAM Racing 20
4 GILL Nadine Michaela Bizkaia Durango 12
5 ŽIGART Urška Team BikeExchange 7

Final Sprints classifcation
1 Heidi Franz Rally Cycling 10
2 Omer Shapira CANYON//SRAM Racing 5
3 Debora Silvestri Top Girls Fassa Bortolo 4
4 Hannah Ludwig CANYON//SRAM Racing 3
5 Maria Martins Drops-Le Col s/b Tempur 3
6 Krista Doebel-Hickok Rally Cycling 1
7 Christina Schweinberger Doltcini-Van Eyck-Proximus 1

— Tom Soladay to rallycycling.com