Five Indonesian riders finished in the top ten on the first stage of the inaugural Tour de Flores on Thursday (19/05), amid scorching heat along the scenic route in eastern Flores.

Indonesian Riders Dominate Top 10 in Tour de Flores' 1st Stage

BY :ALEX MADJI

MAY 19, 2016

Maumere, Flores. Five Indonesian riders finished in the top ten on the first stage of the inaugural Tour de Flores on Thursday (19/05), amid scorching heat along the scenic route in eastern Flores.

Robin Manulang from the Indonesian National Team, Warseno of SAKB Team and Herwin Jaya of BRCC finished in fourth, sixth and seventh place. They completed the race in 3 hours 28 minutes 21 seconds, with seven leading riders separated only by split seconds at the finish.

New Zealand champion Jason Christie from team Kenya Riders Down Under won the stage, which covered 138.8 kilometers from Larantuka, the easternmost town in Flores to Maumere, the capital city of the Sikka district.

Two other Indonesian riders, Aiman Cahyadi of Pegasus Continental Cycling Team and Eko Bayu Nurhidayat of BRC finished 3 seconds and 10 seconds behind, in eight and tenth place.

"I was just a little bit behind. I tried my best but I just wasn't fast enough," Robin said, commenting on his sprint with the other fourteen racers in the last 100 meters to the finish.

The winner Christie said the stage was especially challenging for the riders, as the dry heat drained their stamina quickly.

All 98 riders stayed in the peloton in the first 10 kilometers after the start before four riders started breaking away ahead of the first climb.

After the second sprint, 15 racers broke away from the peloton, with several riders attacking for positions.

Christie and his fellow Kenyan riders were among the last to attack inside the last kilometer, with Christie managing to pip the other leading riders in a close sprint to the finish.

The Tour de Flores continues Friday with a 141.3-kilometer Stage 2 from Maumere to Ende.

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Tour de Flores