Dutch Jeroen Meijers of Taiyuan Miogee Cycing Team of China successfully defended his lead in the 5th and final stage topped by German Mario Vogt of Team Sapura Cycling of Malaysia to grab his first title in 3 years in the 10th Le Tour de Filipinas that concluded on Tuesday in Legaspi City.
Meijers, 26, was with Singaporean Goh Choon Huat of Terrenganu Inc. TSG Cycling of Malaysia in the peloton that clocked 3 hours, 34 minutes and 48 seconds to claim the victory with a total clocking of 20:38:07.
Goh finished second overall in 20:38:52, while Australian Angus Lyons of Oliver’s Real Food Racing of Australia in 20:39:45.
7Eleven Cliqq-Air21 by Roadbike Philippines’ Daniel Habtemichael (20:40:20), PGN Road Cycling Team’s Sandy Nur Hasan (20:40:32) and Aiman Cahyadi (20:40:39), Team Ukyo’s Kohei Yokotsuka (20:40:39) and Naoya Yoshioka (20:40:41) and Team Sapura Cycling’s Muhsin Al Redha Misbah (20:40:42) and Taiyuan Miogee’s Li Shuai (20:40:43) rounded up the top 10.
“I felt good entering Stage 5, we had a good feeling about it and I know you need to celebrate at the finish line, not before because anything can happen,” said Meijers, whose last manor victory came in France three years back.
Vogt topped the 138.1-km Stage 5 in 3:33:39 and bested Filipino Dominic Perez of 7Eleven and Malaysian Mohd Zamri Saleh of Terengganu Inc. TSG Cycing Team of Malaysia, who each timed in 3:34:41.
It was the third podium finish for the 27-year-old Stuttgart native after he also ruled Stage 2 Saturday and placed third in Stage 4 Monday. Vogt eventually finished 12th overall.
Team Ukyo clinched the team crown in 61:59:35 and the US$1,200 (P62,400) purse.
Taiyuan Miogee wound up second (622:36) and PGN Road Cycling Team (62:03:05) third in this five-stage race.
Le Tour chair Donna Mae Lina later said she’s looking forward to next year’s 11th edition. “It was a fitting end to Le Tour’s 10th year anniversary and we’re excited for another one next year,” said Lina.
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