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Trofeo Calvia

Rui Costa: “I couldn’t have asked for more”

As he was making his debut in the colors of Intermarché-Circus-Wanty this Wednesday, the Portuguese rider Rui Costa took the victory in the Trofeo Calvia, the first of five races of the Mallorca Challenge. 

The former World Champion did a perfect race. Halfway through the race in the downhill of the Coll de Soller a counterattack was formed behind the early breakaway, of which he was part together with Kobe Goossens and among others four Soudal-QuickStep riders.

Rui Costa then isolated himself with one of them, Louis Vervaeke, trying to bridge to the leading duo. When they managed to do this, the gap to the chasers increased to 50 seconds. 

Rui Costa and his two breakaway companions managed to resist to the chasing group in extremis and sprinted for the victory. Costa won ahead of Vervaeke, with Goossens finishing in seventh place just like last year.

The Portuguese rider lifted his arms for the first time since winning the national title in 2020. Just like Biniam Girmay last year, he started the counter of the team of Jean-François Bourlart on the roads of Mallorca.

« A new team, a new jersey and a victory for my first race day of the season! My first international success in three years makes me so happy, I couldn’t have asked for more for my debut with Intermarché-Circus-Wanty! The weather conditions made it difficult today, with a lot of wind and rain and cold temperatures. The dangerous descent of Coll de Soller halfway through the race caused an explosion of the peloton, enabling Kobe Goossens and myself to escape with a group of ten riders. Kobe and I were confident, even against a quartet of Soudal-Quickstep among others. In the final I trusted my instinct and in the end I won the race. I only thought about the victory and even though the chasers came very close in the final kilometer, I stayed calm and never looked back. It boosts my morale to finally be able to show that I never forgot how to win. The magic undoubtedly comes from being with my new team, with a fantastic group of teammates and brilliant staff. This evening we will celebrate together this important moment for me! »

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