Gallery: On the startline of the Mallorca Challenge

Sprinters set up for opening stage

Blue skies and relatively warm weather greeted the peloton at the start of the Spanish road season on Saturday at the Mallorca Challenge. The four day event kicks off with a glorified criterium through the streets of Palma, with long, flat roads ideally suited to the sprinters of the peloton.

Made up of riders starting a race for the first time this season - Bradley Wiggins (Team) and Chris Horner (Lampre Merida – and riders who have made the trip from last month’s Tour de San Luis, the Mallorca Challenge differs from most stage races on the calendar in that it allows riders to start or skip stages. They have to start and finish all four in order to qualify for the right to challenge for the overall but with excellent training terrain on the island a number of riders chose to skip today’s criterium.

Among them were Horner and Wiggins. The American only recently signed with Lampre and chose to head into the island’s mountains after appearing briefly at the team’s presentation prior to the start of the criterium.

Click here for the gallery.

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