Malaysia’s Le Tour de Langkawi is arguably the pinup event in the first half of the AsiaTour calendar. Though the 2.HC-ranked Tours of Qatar and Oman have superior funding, ‘LTdL’ delivers colour, passion, energized racing and professionalism in spades. The route of the 18th LTdL, from February 21 to March 2, was announced in Kuala Lumpur … Continue reading
If Alexander Serebryakov was today’s biggest winner, the biggest loser was Aisan Racing Team’s Taiji Nishitani. A stage winner last week, the diminutive Japanese sprinter was ejected from the race, along with his team, allegedly due to concerns for their safety amidst the ugly Japan-China land rights dispute. With that, Nishitani’s chances of winning the 2012 … Continue reading
If not for today’s 6.2 kilometre prologue, the three day void that lies between ‘Tour of China I’ & ‘Tour of China II’ – with the underlying motive to keep teams in China for as long as possible to give local sponsors value for money – would have been an almost unforgivable dead space. The … Continue reading
Tyler Magner of BMC Hincapie-Sportswear Development Team looked as surprised as anyone when he took his first big stage win in the UCI elite ranks today. Formerly a stagiaire with Team Type 1, the 21-year old led a trifecta of fellow young-guns across the line to conclude a stage finish shrouded in a fog of questionable … Continue reading
After resting on Taiji Nishitani’s shoulders for less than 24 hours, the sprinter’s blue jersey was (figuratively; it would have been a mighty tight fit otherwise) handed over to Team Type 1 – Sanofi’s Alexander Serebryakov. It was the big Russian’s second Tour of China stage win, and there are plenty of opportunities left for more.
Taiji Nishitani secured his second stage win of 2012 in Xiangyang today and was rewarded with enough points to elevate him into the lead of the Tour of China points classification. With the Japan Cup a little over a month away, the diminutive sprinter may also find himself at the top of the AsiaTour individual … Continue reading
Not for the first time this year, Team Type 1 – Sanofi demonstrated its fast-twitch capacity extends beyond Alexander Serebryakov, with Aldo Ino Ilesic giving the squad its second win in two days. The race’s first categorised climbs also heralded the opening of the KOM classification, but offered little challenge to the general classification leaders.
Rain, damn rain. It’s uncomfortable enough on a point-to-point stage, but its insidious nature is amplified when added to a tight-cornered city circuit race. Despite the potential hazards and the 50kph average speed, all 124 starters finished today’s second stage in Xi’an city safely – with Team Type 1’s Alexander Serebryakov leading the field home.
Combine a mid-season vacuum with two cancelled races in Iran, and it feels like the UCI AsiaTour never left China. Several teams from July’s Tour of Qinghai Lake were back on familiar ground again, with a few additions thrown in to keep things fresh.
Subscribers to the “more is better” philosophy will appreciate having not one, but two, Tours of China on the UCI AsiaTour calendar this year. Following two years of a relatively compact schedule, the race has now been split into two, with an aggregate distance just shy of 1,050 kilometres.