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2018 Challenge Illes Balears - Volta Ciclista a Mallorca (4 x 1.1)

27th edition: January 25 - 28, 2018

Challenge Illes Balears podium history | 2017 edition | Start list

The Challenge Ciclista Mallorca is a series of four 1.1 races held in late January - early February on the Balearic Islands in the western Mediterranean sea. While each race is an independent 1.1 ranked competition, until 2010 there was a General Classification for an overall winner as well.

Stage 1, Trofeo Campos-Porreres-Felanitz-Ses Salinas | Stage 2, Trofero Serra de Tramuntana | Stage 3, Trofeo Lloseta-Andratx | Stage 4, Trofeo Palma


Sunday, January 28: 4th & final stage, Trofeo Palma, 159.6 km

John Degenkolb

John Degenkolb wins again.

The race: Here's the story from winner John Degenkolb's Trek-Segafredo team.

In only his second race start of the season, John Degenkolb made no mistake and sprinted to his second victory Sunday, taking the win in the Trofeo Palma, the final race of the Challenge Cyclista Mallorca. The win comes after Degenkolb claimed success in the opening race of the four-day series on Thursday, giving the German a perfect start to the year.

Degenkolb said: "I am so happy - thanks to my team! I know that I am in good shape and I feel pretty good. It's always nice to start the season like this. I think it's the first time I have won the first two races in a season, that's a premiere for me. To have this feeling, which I missed so much last year and now I have it already twice…It's so nice to be in the winning line again!"

The race began and finished in Palma and despite a significant climb with 40 kilometers to go, was destined to end in a bunch finish with both Trek-Segafredo and Lotto Soudal interested in bringing it together.

Steven De Jongh, Trek-Segafredo’s Sport Director, explained: "We wanted to let a small group go away so we could control the situation and that is what happened. The breakaway was not very strong, so we were always in control. Greggy (Rast) pulled until the bottom of the last climb and Markel (Irizar) and John punctured at the bottom, but they could come back. We still had six riders at the top, only Greggy was dropped, but he had a reason to drop after pulling all day. And then in the leadout, the boys did a wonderful job. They were all there with one goal and they delivered."

Coming off a two-week training camp in Mallorca, Trek-Segafredo had its Classics team around Degenkolb and controlled the 159-kilometer race from start to end. Degenkolb was positioned perfectly in the final meters, leaving little doubt to the outcome. Afterward, he heaped praise on his teammates:

"We showed again we were the strongest team in the race. It was fantastic teamwork; we took responsibility to control the race from the start and everyone on the team did the job he had to do. I had some bad luck just before the climb and I had to come back after a flat tire and it cost some energy, but it the end I was still able to follow in the big group.

"In the leadout, we picked the right moment to come to the front, and I only had to do the last 200 meters! So that was for me super nice and I am so happy. This victory is definitely a team victory - for all of us. We took the responsibility and we got the reward for it."

Complete results:

159.6 kilometers raced at an average speed of 42.095 km/hr

1 DEGENKOLB, John TREK-SEGAFREDO 3hr 47min 29sec
2 BASKA, Erik BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
3 VERMELTFOORT, Coen ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
4 SANZ UNZUE, Enrique EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
5 BARBERO, Carlos MOVISTAR s.t.
6 TORRES, Albert SPAIN s.t.
7 WARLOP, Jordi SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
8 ROJAS, José MOVISTAR s.t.
9 BASSO, Leonardo SKY s.t.
10 CAÑELLAS, Xavier SPAIN s.t.
11 EZQUERRA, Jesus BURGOS-BH s.t.
12 ISTA, Kevyn WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
13 LE ROUX, Romain FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
14 DECLERCQ, Benjamin SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
15 INSAUSTI, Jon Ander TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
16 SERRANO, Gonzalo CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
17 PRADES, Eduard EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
18 DE BUYST, Jasper LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
19 GOLAS, Michal SKY s.t.
20 SAEZ BENITO, Hector EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
21 STUYVEN, Jasper TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
22 ERVITI, Imanol MOVISTAR s.t.
23 BRAVO, Garikoitz EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
24 REINDERS, Elmar ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
25 MARTIN, Gotzon TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
26 ANDEMESKEL, Awet ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
27 FERRARI, Fabricio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
28 SALAS, Ibai BURGOS-BH s.t.
29 PÖSTLBERGER, Lukas BORA-HANSGROHE @ 4sec
30 SESSLER, Nicolas BURGOS-BH s.t.
31 PEYSKENS, Dimitri WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
32 MERINO, Igor BURGOS-BH s.t.
33 DEIGNAN, Philip SKY s.t.
34 ROSON, Jaime MOVISTAR s.t.
35 LIGTHART, Pim ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 10
36 KONRAD, Patrick BORA-HANSGROHE 12
37 MOSCON, Gianni SKY 16
38 VAN POPPEL, Boy TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
39 REIJNEN, Kiel TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
40 IRIZAR, Markel TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
41 HOFLAND, Moreno LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
42 VALLS FERRI, Rafael MOVISTAR s.t.
43 NAESEN, Lawrence LOTTO-SOUDAL 22
44 SCHWARZMANN, Michael BORA-HANSGROHE 26
45 SPRENGERS, Thomas SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI 34
46 VAN GOETHEM, Brian ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
47 BENEDETTI, Cesare BORA-HANSGROHE 38
48 VANENDERT, Jelle LOTTO-SOUDAL 40
49 FRISON, Frederik LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
50 JUARISTI, Txomin TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
51 LIETAER, Eliot WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
52 MOLLEMA, Bauke TREK-SEGAFREDO 51
53 SAGAN, Juraj BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
54 CAMPENAERTS, Victor LOTTO-SOUDAL 53
55 COLOMBO, Raul BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO 4:59
56 MORTIER, Julien WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
57 DEHAES, Kenny WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
58 AMICI, Alberto BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
59 SALVADOR, Enrico BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
60 RAST, Gregory TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
61 STANNARD, Ian SKY s.t.
62 MORA, Sebastian SPAIN s.t.
63 GOIKOETXEA, Peio TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
64 VAN WINDEN, Dennis ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
65 VAN BAARLE, Dylan SKY s.t.
66 AMORES, Julio A SPAIN s.t.
67 AZURMENDI, Ibai TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
68 SOTO, Nelson A CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
69 LOPEZ, Daniel BURGOS-BH s.t.
70 ELISSONDE, Kenny SKY s.t.
71 RODRIGUEZ, Cristian CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
72 CELANO, Danilo CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
73 GONZALEZ, Aitor EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
74 PERICHON, Pierre Luc FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
75 BONNAMOUR, Franck FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
76 JARRIER, Benoit FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
77 WELTEN, Bram FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
78 VAN HECKE, Preben SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
79 VERWILST, Aaron SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
80 HAPPKE, Luca Felix SAUERLAND NRW 6:06
81 GROSSER, Aaron SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
82 SIMON, Péter PANNON CYCLING s.t.
83 MÜNSTERMANN, Per Chris SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
84 DERUETTE, Thomas WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
85 GONZALEZ, Adrian BURGOS-BH s.t.
86 GARCIA, Ricardo TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
87 KNOLLE, Jon SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
88 GOZZI, Nicolo BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
89 DANIEL, Maxime FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
90 DELCÓ, Lorenzo BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
91 SARAMOTINS, Aleksejs BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
92 ASSELMAN, Jesper ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
93 DINA, Dániel PANNON CYCLING s.t.
94 TUREK, Daniel ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
95 ENGER, Sondre ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
96 NOPPE, Christophe SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
97 PLANCKAERT, Emiel SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
98 GARCIA, Vicente SPAIN s.t.
99 BENITO DIEZ, Miguel A CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
100 WIPPERT, Wouter ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 7:14
101 INTRA, Felix SAUERLAND NRW 11:31
102 HOLLÓ, Botond PANNON CYCLING 12:16
103 FILUTÁS, Viktor PANNON CYCLING s.t.
104 SZABO, Miklos PANNON CYCLING s.t.
105 MOLINA, Antonio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA 13:42
106 PARDILLA, Sergio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
107 REIS, Rafael CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
108 ARANBURU, Alex CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA 13:44
109 VAN DER LIJKE, Nick ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 14:46
110 ZUAZUBISKAR, Illart SPAIN 15:21
111 OROSZ, Gergo PANNON CYCLING s.t.
112 TORRES, Pablo BURGOS-BH 16:11
113 ZATHURECZKY, Márk PANNON CYCLING 16:40

Saturday, January 27: Stage 3, Trofeo Lloseta-Andratx, 165.8 km

Tom Skujins

Tom Skujins finishes nearly a half minute ahead of his nearest chaser.

The race: Here's the story from second-place Gregor Muhlberger's Bora-hansgrohe team.

The penultimate day of the Mallorca Challenge saw an exciting final. After 80km of constant attacking from the peloton a trio went up the road. Shortly before the finish one rider launched a last attack but BORA – hansgrohe rider Gregor Mühlberger tried to close the gap. In the final, it was T. Skujins (Trek-Segafredo) who crossed the line as first ahead of the BORA – hansgrohe rider.

The Stage
The third day of the Mallorca Challenge covered 165,8km from Lloseta to Andratx. The race featured two climbs and two intermediate sprints, a race which favored the climbers in the peloton, but rain made the course difficult and risky.

The Team Tactics
BORA – hansgrohe focused on the final to make a successful move. With a great teamwork through the day, the German squad showed once again a great team spirit. 

The Race
The race remained all together despite many breakaway attempts. After 89km of racing, a trio built a gap of more than two minutes over the peloton, where BORA – hansgrohe took the control over the pace. Earlier in the race, it was Felix Großschartner, who won the “special sprint”. 50km before the finish the race situation changed, one rider had a one-minute gap and headed into the final.

With 20km remaining, ten riders, one of them, BORA – hansgrohe rider Gregor Mühlberger, attacked and tried to close the gap. As the race came into the final lap, T. Skujins (Trek-Segafredo) raised the pace again and crossed the line ahead of BORA – hansgrohe rider Gregor Mühlberger. 

From the Finish Line
“It was a good day for us, the guys showed a great teamwork. They help, wait and support each other. It was not an easy final, Patrick crashed but no injuries were recorded. Gregor and Lukas tried to go with the group and Gregor made it. I think the boys showed that they are in a really good shape yet.” – Jens Zemke, sports director

“I felt really good today and we worked very well together. It´s nice to finish a great teamwork with a good result like today.” – Gregor Mühlberger 

Complete Results:

HD= Hors delais, or beyond time limit.

165.8 kilometers raced at an average speed of 38.375 km/hr

1 SKUJINS, Toms TREK-SEGAFREDO 4hr 19min 14sec
2 MÜHLBERGER, Gregor BORA-HANSGROHE @ 25sec
3 REINDERS, Elmar ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 31
4 VALVERDE, Alejandro MOVISTAR 42
5 LIGTHART, Pim ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
6 PRADES, Eduard EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
7 WELLENS, Tim LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
8 MOSCON, Gianni SKY s.t.
9 GARCIA, Vicente SPAIN s.t.
10 MOLLEMA, Bauke TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
11 PÖSTLBERGER, Lukas BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
12 LUNKE, Sindre S FORTUNEO-SAMSIC 46
13 LIETAER, Eliot WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
14 PEYSKENS, Dimitri WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
15 CAMPENAERTS, Victor LOTTO-SOUDAL 1:13
16 GOLAS, Michal SKY s.t.
17 BRAMBILLA, Gianluca TREK-SEGAFREDO 1:16
18 AZURMENDI, Ibai TEAM EUSKADI 1:18
19 ELISSONDE, Kenny SKY 1:59
20 EZQUERRA, Jesus BURGOS-BH 2:27
21 BARBERO, Carlos MOVISTAR 2:44
22 GOGL, Michael TREK-SEGAFREDO 3:51
23 SPRENGERS, Thomas SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI 3:54
24 SERRANO, Gonzalo CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
25 DIAZ GALLEGO, Jose M ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
26 NIV, Guy ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY 3:59
27 ARCAS, Jorge MOVISTAR 5:32
28 ROSON, Jaime MOVISTAR s.t.
29 AMICI, Alberto BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
30 SAMITIER, Sergio EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
31 BRAVO, Garikoitz EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
32 GROSSSCHARTNER, Felix BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
33 JARRIER, Benoit FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
34 CONCI, Nicola TREK-SEGAFREDO 6:37
35 DELTOMBE, Kevin SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI 9:48
36 PARDILLA, Sergio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
37 GOLDSHTEIN, Omer ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
38 SHAW, James LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
39 BERNARD, Julien TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
40 MERINO, Igor BURGOS-BH s.t.
41 VAN HECKE, Preben SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
42 BIZKARRA, Mikel EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY 13:06
43 GARCIA, Ricardo TEAM EUSKADI 15:21
44 VERWILST, Aaron SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
45 STANNARD, Ian SKY 17:03
46 BASSO, Leonardo SKY s.t.
47 GOIKOETXEA, Peio TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
48 VAN ROOY, Kenneth SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
49 SALVADOR, Enrico BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
50 VAN GOMPEL, Mathias SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
51 GRMAY, Tsgabu G TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
52 STASSEN, Julien WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
53 BONNAMOUR, Franck FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
54 SESSLER, Nicolas BURGOS-BH s.t.
55 ANDEMESKEL, Awet ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
56 VAN WINDEN, Dennis ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
57 ERVITI, Imanol MOVISTAR s.t.
58 CARRETERO, Hector MOVISTAR s.t.
59 TXOPERENA, Beñat EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
60 DELCÓ, Lorenzo BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
61 LOPEZ-COZAR, Juan A TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
62 DINA, Márton PANNON CYCLING TEAM 23:15 HD

Friday, January 26: Stage 2, Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana, 140.1 km

tim wellens

Tim Wellens takes the second stage.

The race: Here's the report from team Sky.

Gianni Moscon finished a close second to Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) on the second day of Challenge Mallorca as the Belgian rider won the Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana for a second consecutive year.

Wellens and Moscon broke free of an elite leading group that also contained winner Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Gianluca Brambilla (Trek-Segafredo) and Gregor Mühlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe) within the last three kilometres.

The group had engaged in a cat-and-mouse battle across the Coll de sa Batalla and the Coll de Puig Major before Moscon and Wellens finally duelled out the race win in tricky conditions.

Sport Director Gabriel Rasch was encouraged by Moscon's performance so early in the season and believes there is more to come from the young Italian.

He told Teamsky.com: "I think maybe he went a little better than expected. He’s a class rider, but we know he’s working towards his top condition. He’s really competitive and he was happy to take the responsibility of leading today.

"He wasn’t happy with being second, but I think he can be happy with his performance.”

The difficult conditions were underlined by two crashes involving Kenny Elissonde and Michal Golas, but Rasch is confident the pair will be able to take the start line for the third race of Challenge Mallorca on Saturday. He added: "Kenny crashed in the first descent, he hit his knee a little bit but he will be ok to race tomorrow. He had to chase back a long way though. 

"Golas crashed with 3km to go, nothing serious though, so all the riders will be available to race again tomorrow."

Complete results:

140.1 kilometers raced at an average speed of 37.217 km/hr

HD= Hors delais, or beyond time limit.

1 WELLENS, Tim LOTTO-SOUDAL 3hr 45min 52sec
2 MOSCON, Gianni SKY s.t.
3 VALVERDE, Alejandro MOVISTAR @ 24sec
4 BRAMBILLA, Gianluca TREK-SEGAFREDO 27
5 MÜHLBERGER, Gregor BORA-HANSGROHE 37
6 KONRAD, Patrick BORA-HANSGROHE 5:06
7 GOGL, Michael TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
8 MOLLEMA, Bauke TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
9 LIGTHART, Pim ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
10 GROSSSCHARTNER, Felix BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
11 GRMAY, Tsgabu G TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
12 REINDERS, Elmar ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 5:47
13 BONNAMOUR, Franck FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
14 SPRENGERS, Thomas SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
15 WARLOP, Jordi SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
16 TUREK, Daniel ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
17 SAEZ BENITO, Hector EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
18 GOLAS, Michal SKY 6:37
19 DEIGNAN, Philip SKY s.t.
20 MONFORT, Maxime LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
21 MARCZYNSKI, Tomasz LOTTO-SOUDAL 8:01
22 BIZKARRA, Mikel EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY 9:21
23 MOLINA, Antonio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA 10:53
24 ARANBURU, Alex CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
25 RODRIGUEZ, Cristian CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
26 PARDILLA, Sergio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
27 RUBIO, Jesus A SPAIN s.t.
28 AZURMENDI, Ibai TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
29 COLOMBO, Raul BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
30 LOPEZ-COZAR, Juan A TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
31 MARTIN, Gotzon TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
32 JUARISTI, Txomin TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
33 DELTOMBE, Kevin SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOI s.t.
34 SKUJINS, Toms TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
35 ROJAS, José MOVISTAR s.t.
36 CONCI, Nicola TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
37 MORTIER, Julien WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
38 LUNKE, Sindre S FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
39 PEYSKENS, Dimitri WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
40 AMICI, Alberto BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
41 AMADOR, Andrey MOVISTAR s.t.
42 DIAZ GALLEGO, Jose M ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
43 LIETAER, Eliot WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
44 ANDEMESKEL, Awet ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
45 ARCAS, Jorge MOVISTAR s.t.
46 SAMITIER, Sergio EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
47 ERVITI, Imanol MOVISTAR s.t.
48 VAN BAARLE, Dylan SKY s.t.
49 BASSO, Leonardo SKY s.t.
50 NIV, Guy ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
51 BRAVO, Garikoitz EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
52 SARAMOTINS, Aleksejs BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
53 PLAZA, Ruben ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
54 STANNARD, Ian SKY s.t.
55 TORRES, Albert SPAIN s.t.
56 JARRIER, Benoit FORTUNEO-SAMSIC 19:27 HD
57 WARNIER, Antoine WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC 19:27 HD
58 TXOPERENA, Beñat EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY 19:27 HD
59 VAN GOETHEM, Brian ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 19:27 HD
60 DE BUYST, Jasper LOTTO-SOUDAL 19:48 HD
61 MERTZ, Remy LOTTO-SOUDAL 19:52 HD
62 ARMEE, Sander LOTTO-SOUDAL 19:52 HD
63 GESBERT, Elie FORTUNEO-SAMSIC 19:52 HD

Thursday, January 25: Stage 1, Trofeo Campos-Porreres-Felanitz-Ses Salinas, 177.6 km:

John Degenkolb

John Degenkolb gets his 2018 racing season started in fine style.

The race: Here's the report from winner John Degenkolb's Trek-Segafredo team.

John Degenkolb opened his season with a victory, sprinting to the win in the first day of the Challenge Cyclista Mallorca from Campos to Ses Salines.

Trek-Segafredo surrounded Degenkolb with a team of Classics and lead-out specialists for the 178-kilometer race, giving the German sprinter the support he needed for a much-needed win with his last almost a year ago in the Dubai Tour.

"It's a great feeling to get the first victory already, to achieve this together with the team," Degenkolb explained to journalists shortly after the finish. "We had a really nice week of training already this week in Mallorca, in the training camp, and to start the season like this with a win is always great.

"I felt really good; the team did a perfect job to make a good sprint for me. I have good memories of this race because for me this was my first professional race in 2011. Today was a great revival."

It is the second victory for Trek-Segafredo this season, coming two days after Ryan Mullen’s win in stage three of Vuelta a San Juan in Argentina, giving the team an early boost as they start their first year without a headlining star like Fabian Cancellara or Alberto Contador.

"We have already won two races as a team, and I think for the whole team it's a big relief to start the season like this," continued Degenkolb. "Everyone knows we have done our homework, what's needed to win races, and I think we can be very optimistic for the next races."

There’s no secret that Degenkolb has had his share of misfortune in the last few years, from his horrific training accident in 2016 to respiratory issues at the end of 2017 severe enough to hospitalize him. His respiratory problems forced him out of the Vuelta a España, the Tour of Denmark, and caused him to forego the World Championships in Bergen, Norway, where he would have led the German team as one of the race favorites.

"It's a fantastic feeling! I have worked really hard this winter, and after all what has happened at the end of last year, this is such a big relief to get this winning feeling back and know that I am still able to win races because it's quite a long time since I crossed the finish line in first position," exclaimed a happy Degenkolb. "For me, it's just very amazing to feel that, and to also to feel the whole support from the riders: The whole team for the whole winter was behind me and pushed me to come to this level again."

Complete Results:

177.6 kilometers raced at an average speed of 44.003 km/hr

1 DEGENKOLB, John TREK-SEGAFREDO 4hr 2min 18sec
2 ENGER, Sondre ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
3 DE BUYST, Jasper LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
4 DEHAES, Kenny WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
5 TORRES, Albert  SPAIN s.t.
6 CAÑELLAS, Xavier SPAIN s.t.
7 BENNATI, Daniele MOVISTAR s.t.
8 BASKA, Erik BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
9 BASSO, Leonardo SKY s.t.
10 GROSSER, Aaron TEAM SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
11 LOPEZ PARADA, Daniel BURGOS-BH s.t.
12 WARLOP, Jordi SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
13 SANZ UNZUE, Enrique EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
14 WELTEN, Bram FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
15 VAN ROOY, Kenneth SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
16 REIJNEN, Kiel TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
17 ISTA, Kevyn WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
18 EZQUERRA, Jesus BURGOS-BH s.t.
19 SOTO MARTINEZ, Nelson CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
20 WIPPERT, Wouter ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
21 ROJAS, José MOVISTAR s.t.
22 FERNANDEZ, Egoitz TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
23 GOLDSHTEIN, Omer ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
24 STUYVEN, Jasper TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
25 STANNARD, Ian SKY s.t.
26 PÖSTLBERGER, Lukas BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
27 DELTOMBE, Kevin SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
28 VERMELTFOORT, Coen ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
29 MÜNSTERMANN, Per Chris  TEAM SAUERLAND NRW @ 6sec
30 ELISSONDE, Kenny SKY s.t.
31 COLOMBO, Raul BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
32 SAEZ BENITO, Hector EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
33 FERRARI, Fabricio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
34 GONZALEZ, Adrian BURGOS-BH s.t.
35 REINDERS, Elmar ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
36 NOPPE, Christophe SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
37 TERUEL ROVIRA, Eloy SPAIN @ 8sec
38 SALAS ZORROZUA, Ibai BURGOS-BH s.t.
39 PLANCKAERT, Emiel SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
40 VALVERDE, Alejandro MOVISTAR s.t.
41 PARDILLA, Sergio  CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
42 MARTIN SANZ, Gotzon TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
43 SALVADOR, Enrico BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
44 VAN BAARLE, Dylan SKY s.t.
45 GOLAS, Michal SKY s.t.
46 VAN GOMPEL, Mathias SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
47 MOSCON, Gianni SKY s.t.
48 GARCIA, Ricardo TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
49 DANIEL, Maxime FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
50 SIMON CASULLERAS, Jordi BURGOS-BH s.t.
51 SVENDGAARD, Michael FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
52 BENEDETTI, Cesare BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
53 TUREK, Daniel ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
54 HUN   DINA, Dániel PANNON CYCLING TEAM s.t.
55 NIV, Guy ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
56 MORA, Sebastian SPAIN s.t.
57 LIETAER, Eliot WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
58 INTRA, Felix TEAM SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
59 LIGTHART, Pim ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
60 MOLINA CANET, Antonio CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
61 IRIZAR, Markel TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
62 ARCAS, Jorge MOVISTAR s.t.
63 PRADES, Eduard EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
64 DINA, Márton PANNON CYCLING TEAM s.t.
65 ARANBURU DEBA, Alex CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
66 LUNKE, Sindre S FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
67 MORTIER, Julien WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC s.t.
68 ERVITI, Imanol MOVISTAR s.t.
69 LEDANOIS, Kevin FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
70 AMADOR, Andrey MOVISTAR s.t.
71 VAN POPPEL, Boy TREK-SEGAFREDO s.t.
72 FRISON, Frederik LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
73 AMORES PALACIO, Julio SPAIN 18
74 SIMON, Péter PANNON CYCLING TEAM 20
75 CARRETERO, Hector MOVISTAR s.t.
76 LEINAU, Louis TEAM SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
77 NAESEN, Lawrence LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
78 LOPEZ-COZAR, Juan TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
79 ZANARDINI, Andrea BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
80 HOFLAND, Moreno LOTTO-SOUDAL 29
81 SCHWARZMANN, Michael BORA-HANSGROHE 32
82 PEYSKENS, Dimitri WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC 39
83 FILUTÁS, Viktor PANNON CYCLING TEAM s.t.
84 DEIGNAN, Philip SKY s.t.
85 ROBEET, Ludovic WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC 40
86 JARRIER, Benoit FORTUNEO-SAMSIC 50
87 TORRES MUIÑO, Pablo BURGOS-BH s.t.
88 PERICHON, Pierre Luc FORTUNEO-SAMSIC s.t.
89 WELLENS, Tim LOTTO-SOUDAL 53
90 IRIBAR, Unai SPAIN 54
91 VAN WINDEN, Dennis ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY s.t.
92 VAN HECKE, Preben SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOIS s.t.
93 LOPEZ FUENTES, Diego TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
94 RODRIGUEZ, Sergio EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY 56
95 UDONDO, Gotzon EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
96 SAGAN, Juraj BORA-HANSGROHE 1:23
97 STASSEN, Julien WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC 1:30
98 CAMPENAERTS, Victor LOTTO-SOUDAL 1:55
99 SHAW, James LOTTO-SOUDAL s.t.
100 BRÄNDLE, Matthias TREK-SEGAFREDO 2:21
101 LEMUS DAVILA, Luis ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY 2:38
102 DELCÓ, Lorenzo BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.
103 VAN SCHIP, Jan Willem ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 3:16
104 GOIKOETXEA, Peio TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
105 GONZALEZ, Aitor EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY s.t.
106 ROBREDO, Alvaro BURGOS-BH s.t.
107 KNOLLE, Jon TEAM SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
108 INSAUSTI, Jon Ander TEAM EUSKADI s.t.
109 ZUAZUBISKAR, Illart SPAIN s.t.
110 SZABO, Miklos PANNON CYCLING TEAM s.t.
111 ASSELMAN, Jesper ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ s.t.
112 REIS, Rafael CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA s.t.
113 SARAMOTINS, Aleksejs BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
114 KONIG, Leopold BORA-HANSGROHE s.t.
115 VAN DER LIJKE, Nick ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ 4:57
116 HAPPKE, Luca Felix TEAM SAUERLAND NRW s.t.
117 SERRANO, Gonzalo CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA 5:17
118 OROSZ, Gergo PANNON CYCLING TEAM s.t.
119 HOLLÓ, Botond PANNON CYCLING TEAM 6:03
120 AMICI, Alberto BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO 6:07
121 LOGICA, Enrico BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO 8:05
122 GOZZI, Nicolo BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO s.t.

Start list with back numbers, January 24, 2018:

MOVISTAR
1 VALVERDE Alejandro
2 AMADOR Andrey
3 ROJAS Jose Joaquin
4 ARCAS Jorge
6 BENNATI Daniele
7 CARRETERO Hector
8 ERVITI Imanol
SKY
16 BASSO Leonardo
17 DEIGNAN Philip
18 ELISSONDE Kenny
19 GOLAS Michal
20 MOSCON Gianni
21 STANNARD Ian
22 VAN BAARLE Dylan
TREK-SEGAFREDO
29 VAN POPPEL Boy
31 BRANDLE Matthias
35 IRIZAR Markel
36 RAST Grégory
37 REIJNEN Kiel
39 STUYVEN Jasper
40 DEGENKOLB John
BORA-HANSGROHE
41 BENEDETTI Cesare
42 SAGAN Juraj
43 KÖNIG Leopold
44 BASKA Erik
49 POSTLBERGER Lukas
50 SARAMOTINS Aleksejs
51 SCHWARZMANN Michael
LOTTO-SOUDAL
54 WELLENS Tim
56 CAMPENAERTS Victor
57 DE BUYST Jasper
58 FRISON Frederik
59 HOFLAND Moreno
62 NAESEN Lawrence
63 SHAW James Callum
ISRAEL CYCLING ACADEMY
66 PLAZA Ruben
69 ENGER Sondre
70 GOLDSTEIN Omer
71 LEMUS Luis Enrique
72 NIV Guy
75 TUREK Daniel
76 VAN WINDEN Dennis
CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA
78 PARDILLA Sergio
79 FERRARI Fabricio
80 SOTO Nelson Andres
81 REIS Rafael Ferreira
82 MOLINA Antonio
83 ARANBURU Alex
85 SERRANO Gonzalo
FORTUNEO-SAMSIC
91 LEDANOIS Kevin
93 DANIEL Maxime
94 LUNKE Sindre Skjøstad
96 PERICHON Pierre-Luc
97 SVENDGAARD Michael Carbel
98 WELTEN Bram
99 JARRIER Benoit
BURGOS-BH
101 SIMON CASULLERAS Jordi
102 EZQUERRA Jesús
106 GONZÁLEZ Adrián
107 TORRES Pablo
109 SALAS Ibai
110 LÓPEZ Daniel
111 ROBREDO Alvaro
SPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOISE
115 DELTOMBE Kevin
116 NOPPE Christophe
117 PLANCKAERT Emiel
119 VAN GOMPEL Matthias
120 VAN HECKE Preben
121 VAN ROOY Kenneth
123 WARLOP Jordi
EUSKADI BASQUE COUNTRY
126 SANZ UNZUE Enrique
127 GONZÁLEZ Aitor
128 BARRENETXEA Ander
129 UDONDO Gotzon
134 PRADES Eduard
135 RODRIGUEZ Sergio
136 SÁEZ Hector
ROOMPOT-NEDERLANDSE LOTERIJ
141 ASSELMAN Jesper
142 LIGTHART Pim
143 WIPPERT Wouter
144 VAN SCHIP Jan Willem
145 REINDERS Elmar
146 VAN DER LIJKE Nick
148 VERMELTFOORT Coen
WB AQUA PROTECT VERANCLASSIC
151 DEHAES Kenny
152 ISTA Kevin
153 PEYSKENS Dimitri
154 STASSEN Julien
155 MORTIER Julien
156 LIETAER Eliot
157 ROBEET Ludovic
BIESSE CARRERA GAVARDO
161 AMICI Alberto
162 COLOMBO Raul
163 DELCO Lorenzo
164 GOZZI Nicolo
165 LOGICA Enrico
167 SALVADOR Enrico
168 ZANARDINI Andrea
TEAM EUSKADI
174 FERNÁNDEZ Egoitz
175 GARCIA Ricardo
176 GOIKOETXEA Peio
177 INSAUSTI Jon Ander
179 LOPEZ FUENTES Diego
180 LÓPEZ-COZAR Juan
181 MARTIN SANZ Gotzon
TEAM SAUERLAND NRW
183 LEINAU Louis
184 LEINAU Joann
185 GROSSER Aaron
186 INTRA Felix
188 HAPPKE Luca Felix
189 MÜNSTERMANN Per
190 KNOLLE Jon
PANNON CYCLING TEAM
192 DINA Daniel
193 FILUTAS Viktor
195 DINA Marton
196 HOLLO Botond
197 SIMON Peter
200 SZABO Miklos
201 OROSZ Gergely
SPAIN
203 TORRES Albert
204 MORA Sebastian
205 CAÑELLAS Xavier
207 ZUAZUBISKAR Illart
209 AMORES Julio Alberto
210 TERUEL Eloy
212 IRIBAR Unai