Rafael Valls scores the first win for the young Footon-Servetto-Fuji team
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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Valls scores first win for the young Footon-Servetto-Fuji team

by VeloNation Press at 9:08 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results

Rafael Valls scored the Footon-Servetto-Fuji team's first victory of the season today in the second stage of the Tour de San Luis. The 22-year-old Spaniard took his victory in style, arriving at the top of the second category Alto de El Mirador climb alone with seven seconds in hand on Cuban Arnold Alcolea. Venezuelan Jackson Rodriguez (Androni Giocattoli) rounded out the podium in third a further three seconds behind. Colombian Jose Serpa (Androni Giocattoli) and Italian Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Doimo) completed the top five with Dane Michael Rasmussen (Miche) finishing ninth 19 seconds off the pace.

“I’m really happy, I wasn’t expecting it. It’s true that I had done good training rides in the winter and took advantage of the good weather in my homeland, but bad weather stopped us from keeping that level in the team’s training camp and it left me with some doubts before the race," said Valls who credits his team for their strong efforts.

In the finale Valls saw the overall contenders looking at one another and took advantage of the situation.  "I attacked with one kilometer left, and I succeeded. It’s been the way to return Gianetti and Matxin the confidence given. This victory is for them and all the team. Saving the leader jersey is going to be hard, even more when looking at the long ITT awaiting for us, but it’s not time to think about it, just to enjoy the victory.”

Valls rode for the Burgos Monumental-Castilla y Leon team last year, and before that was a stagiare for the Scott-American Beef and Relax teams in 2008 and 2007 respectively. His efforts today also gave him the race's overall lead, and have shown early promise in the Footon-Servetto-Fuji team's very young ProTour squad.

Stage 2 157 km
1. Rafael Valls (Footon-Servetto-Fuji) 3 h 56 m 51 s
2. Arnold Alcolea (Cuba) to 7 s
3. Jackson Rodriguez (Androni Giocattoli) to 10 s
4. Jose Serpa (Androni Giocattoli) st
5. Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas) st
6. Ignacio Pereyra (Argentina) to 16 s
7. Luca Mazzanti (Katusha) to 18 s
8. Javier Moreno (Andalucia-Cajasur) st
9. Michael Rasmussen (Miche) to 19 s
10. Raul Granjel (Cuba) to 24 s

General Classification after stage 2
1. Rafael Valls (Footon-Servetto-Fuji) 8 h 19 m 34 s
2. Arnold Alcolea (Cuba) 8 s
3. Jackson Rodriguez (Androni Giocattoli) to 16 s
4. Jose Serpa (Androni Giocattoli) at 20 s
5. Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas) st


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