Thursday, March 12, 2015

Guardini Powers His Way To Third Victory In 2015 LTdL

KUALA BERANG, March 11 (Bernama) -- Kazakhstan's Astana Pro Team rider, Andrea Guardini put up another sensational ride en route to victory in stage four of the 2015 Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL), involving a 165.4km distance from Kota Baharu, Kelantan to Kuala Berang, Terengganu, Wednesday.

Wednesday's victory saw Guardini stretching his stage record wins in the LTdL to 17, after having won five stages in the 2011 edition, six (2012), three (2014) and also stage one in Langkawi on Sunday and second stage from Alor Setar to Sungai Petani of a 185km distance, on Monday.

The 25-year old Italian fully utilitises his capabilities in the undulating terrain crossed the finishing line in three hours 43 minutes and 14 seconds with a bunch of riders.

He only missed the podium in Tuesday's stage three involving a 170km distance from Gerik, Perak to Tanah Merah, Kelantan after finishing in 47th place out of 128 riders.

"All of my teammates worked really hard today such as the young Kazakhstan rider who opened space for me to sprint to the finishing line," he said.

"Today's win is a perfect start for me in the new year and hopefully it will continue in the next few stages," Guardini quipped.

Australian rider, Caleb Ewan who still retained the yellow jersey as the overall leader despite finishing third in Wednesday's race, played down the chance to beat Guardini in Thursday's race.

"It will be tough but if everything goes as planned, I think I have the chance (to beat Guardini)," said the nippy Australian.

United States rider, Kiel Reijnen of UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling Team, on the other hand, feels he needs to step up to the plate if he wants to win the red jersey (king of mountains) Thursday, which has been his since the first stage in Langkawi.

"Mathematically, I have not won the red jersey yet as the race is still far from finished, but hopefully, I will stay focused until the end," said the 28-year old Washington native.

On Thursday, all 125 riders are set to compete in the longest distance of the 2015 edition which is 200km from Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu, to Kuantan, Pahang involving three sprint zones at Dungun, Kertih and Chukai and also a climbing zone at Kijal.


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