Cuban rider Arlenis Sierra came in second in the massive and furious sprint that dominated the fast Italian Elisa Balsamo, during the fourth and final stage of the VIII Vuelta Ciclística Valenciana 2024, in Spain.

Sierra achieved her excellent performance after 118 kilometers with mountains, in a section not as abrupt as Friday’s main day, thanks to the collective work of the Movistar team.

Olivia Baril, for whom Arlenis worked the day before until she almost fainted in the middle of the hills, reciprocated the Cuban’s effort and contributed to the conquest of the podium. She crossed in 22nd place and finished twelfth, the best of the blue team in the overall individual classification.

“This is another type of cycling that in Latin America they are not used to, because when we work it is for the team, not because we always try to get to the front”, declared the outstanding cyclist from Manzanillo.

In the Sunday race the route included hills from kilometer 13 to 80, but the highest elevation and five kilometers crowned in the 87. After long descents, the terrain was flat until the line of sentence.

“In the mountain pass I was in the leading group and I stayed, but my teammates gave it to me to stick again to the leaders. After I made it, the team did a great job for the finish,” said the “Pantera”, as she is called in the Movistar club.

She recalled that on Friday’s queen stage of spectacular hills, they worked very hard for Olivia, as she was doing well on the climbs and managed to get her into 18th place.

“I worked so hard that when they guided me to let go and go soft to be okay today I was honestly exhausted,” she commented referring to the terrifying 129 kilometers packed with elevations. Olivia was able to break into the top 20.

This Sunday, after the victory of Balsamo, world road champion in 2021, Swiss Marlen Reusser (SD Worx-Protime) was proclaimed champion of the Tour by keeping her leader’s jersey, which she snatched from the Italian herself in the second stage and managed to defend it in the next two.

The European time trial champion was followed by Poland’s Katarzyna Niewiadoma (CANYON//SRAM Racing) and New Zealand’s Niamh Fisher-Black (SD Worx-Protime).

Arlenis Sierra announced that her next competition will be on February 24 in Belgium.

Source: Lisset Ricardo,