HA NOI (VNS)— Choi Ki-ho of the Hong Kong team won the first stage of the ADC Tour of Viet Nam yesterday.
|Finish line: Choi Ki-ho of Hong Kong passes Uzbekistan racers in the final metres to win the first stage of the ADC Tour of Viet Nam. — VNS Photo Hai Van
The cyclist travelled the 166km from HCM City to Can Tho City in three hours 33.15 minutes.
The first-ever cycling tournament held in Viet Nam under the International Cycling Union has drawn eight local and 13 international teams.
Knowing that their rivals were strong, the Vietnamese teams' leading racers opened their attack in the first few metres.
Truong Nguyen Thanh Nhan and Tran Thanh Nhanh of HCM City Eximbank, Nguyen Vu Linh of Dong Thap Domesco Pharmacy and Trinh Duc Tam from host ADC Vinh Long Television rotated to lead the peloton in the first 30km.
They were joined by the Malaysian national team and the Terrenganu team, also from Malaysia, before the group behind caught up with them when 40km stood between them and the finish line.
The Vietnamese failed to hold onto the leading positions, leaving 11 foreigners running away at 45km/h.
Choi and Vladimir Tuychiev and Denis Shaymanov of Uzbekistan separated from the pack and pedalled strongly to the finish.Choi successfully passed the others by a hair. Tuychiev was second and Shaymanov came third.
With two athletes in the top three, the Uzbekistan team topped the rankings after the first stage, followed by Hong Kong and ADC Vinh Long Television.
"This win shows the extent of Choi Ki-ho's strength. He is still at his peak after his victory at the Tour Indonesia," said Nguyen Huy Hung, coach of the Viet Nam national team.
The second stage, which takes place today, will go from O Mon District to Rach Gia city - a distance of 196km.
Bikers will travel 864km in five stages, starting in HCM City and moving through eight Mekong Delta provinces before returning to the city on December 17.
The winners will receive about VND500 million (about US$23,800). — VNS