Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) on Tuesday won the Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana, the third event on the Challenge Mallorca calendar.
Sergio Henao (Sky) was second in the five-climb affair, ahead of Robert Gesink (Blanco) and Movistar’s Rui Costa.
Bradley Wiggins (Sky) launched a late attack from the peloton, but it was Valverde, Henao, Gesink and Costa who rode across to the day’s early breakaway and onto the front of the race on the Cat. 1 Puigmajor climb. The four riders were soon on their own again and the Movistar tandem tried in vain to drop Henao.
Valverde topped the group in a sprint for his 70th professional win.
“I knew I was strong, but I didn’t quite know how my reactions were going to be as I’m taking things more cautiously this season,” said Valverde. “I knew I had ended the 2012 season in really good shape, and came here with good motivation, and it’s true that once you’re up-front, you always try to win. When you’re calm, when your sensations while training are good from the very start and the team is doing well, things go smooth.”
The Challenge Mallorca continues Wednesday with the 170km Trofeo Alcúdia-Can Picafort-Playa de Muro, which takes in four categorized climbs early in the race.