Tour d’Azerbaidjan Opening Stage Won by Local Team

01/05/2013  //     //  Genel Duyuru ve Haberler ( Bisiklet, Triatlon, Atletizm, Yüzme )

Baku,

the capital of Azerbaijan, which is a country connecting the
Near-East to Anatolia, started hosting
2013 Tour d’Azerbaidjan‘s
opening stage at the early hours of the day. Although it’s a 2.2
event on its 2
nd year, the organisation quality of our
brother country’s Tour is at a much higher level. 25 teams were
expected to participate, however since National Team Iran didn’t
start the Tour, so 141 riders from 24 teams took place at today’s
stage, which was 157 km long and has a criterium profile with a route
of 14.3 km.

 

 

Torku
Şeker Spor from Turkey takes part in this Tour as well, with a squad
of 6. The team’s sport director, Mehmet Şafakçı, to whom we made
an interview with at the beginning of the stage, had mentioned that
they were ready for an expected bunched sprint finish, with Yuri
Metlushenko
. Yuri was among the names who were affected by the
unfortunate accident which happened at the 2nd stage of
Tour of Turkey. Metlushenko said before the start of the opening
stage that, he had overcome the accident and was ready for today’s
struggle for the finish.

 

 

 

After
the start at 10:30, the first breakaway, including 10 riders, occured
after the first lap and the escapees had a 7 seconds of advantage. 5
laps to go, the gap between the escape group, including
Nazım
Bakırcı
and the main pack reached up to 5’20”. 2 riders from
Rabobank Development Team, who were among the escape group of 11,
were setting the pace, while
Lotto-Belisol U23 Team was increasing
the tempo ahead of the peloton in order to catch the escapees.

 

 

3 laps
to go, though the gap dropped down to 3’30”, the leading pack was
performing a great escape. Considering he had only 2 months of
training after his surgery, Nazım Bakırcı’s performance was
remarkable while he led the escape pack. The Irish rider of the local
team, Connor McConvey of Synergy Baku Cycling Project, solo-attacked
2 laps to go and he caught a 7 seconds advantage, which was very
effective on the increasing enthusiasm. But would it be enough for
the high tempo of the last lap?

 

 

When the escapees were caught
by the main pack 600 metres to go to finish, the winner of the last
kilometer struggle became Christoph Schweizer, after the long-running
escape. With his victory, the German rider gave the Leader’s Blue
Jersey and the Best Sprinter’s Green Jersey to his team, Synergy Baku
Cycling Project
, as a gift, among the cheering Azerbaijani people.
The runner-up of the day was Ukrainian Maksym Averin of Atlas
Personal-Jakroo
while Maarten van Trijp of Rabobank Development Team,
who had a dominating rule all along the stage, won the 3rd place.

 

 

 

Nazım Bakırcı of Torku Şeker,
performed quite well after the Tour of Turkey and spent a big effort
throughout the day, but finally had to join the main pack when the
escape group was caught. Mustafa Sayar, had to leave the race 4 laps
to go, due to a cramp in his stomach and was taken to the ambulance;
fortunately the Champion was in good health. Sergiy Grechyn, who’s
one of the strongest transfers, had a problem with his stomach too,
but still he managed to seize a perfect position for the finish
sprint. Although he experienced this problem, Grechyn, who’s been
delivering a good performance since the beginning of the season, did
the same today again for his team.

 

 

 

Christoph Schweizer, who’s the
winner of the stage and the Leader’s Jersey, gifted his his victory
to his father who celebrates his birthday today. He said that, he
came to the finish quite easily with the support of his team-mates. 
Tomorrow, the second stage of Tour
d’Azerbaidjan will be held at a challenging hilly profile. Schweizer,
mentioned that he would try to retain the Leader’s Jersey, and added
that tomorrow’s demanding climbs were not convenient for himself and
he could lose his lead after tomorrow’s high altitude 183 km stage,
in which there will be tough gradients for sprinters.

 

 

 

Tour d’Azerbaidjan 1st Stage Results:

 

 

Stage Classification:

1  SCHWEIZER Christoph Synergy Baku Cycling Project
2  AVERIN Maksym Atlas Personal – Jakroo
3  VAN TRIJP Maarten Rabobank Development Team
4  GRECHYN Serhiy Konya Torku Seker Sport
5  BARBERO CUESTA Carlos Euskadi
6  SCHEIT Florian Rad-Net Rose Team
7  FONTE Cesar Efapel – Glassdrive
8  ZHAROVEN Nikita
9  LIEPINS Emils Alpha Baltic – Unitymarathons.com
10  DE BIE Sean Leopard – Trek Continental Team

 

General Classification After Stage 1:

1  SCHWEIZER Christoph Synergy Baku Cycling Project
2  AVERIN Maksym Atlas Personal – Jakroo
3  VAN TRIJP Maarten Rabobank Development Team
4  GRECHYN Serhiy Konya Torku Seker Sport
5  BARBERO CUESTA Carlos Euskadi
6  SCHEIT Florian Rad-Net Rose Team
7  FONTE Cesar Efapel – Glassdrive
8  ZHAROVEN Nikita
9  LIEPINS Emils Alpha Baltic – Unitymarathons.com
10  DE BIE Sean Leopard – Trek Continental Team

 

 

Jerseys:


Race Leader: Christoph Schweizer (Synergy Baku Cycling Project)
King of the Mountain: Cesar Fonte (Efapel-Glassdrive)
Sprint: Maksym Averin (Atlas Personal – Jakroo)
Best Azerbaijani Rider: Elchin Asadov (Synergy Baku Cycling Project)
Best Young Rider: Maarten van Trijp (Rabobank Development Team)

 

 

 

 

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