South Korean Jang wins the first stage of International Bình Dương TV Cycling

January 05, 2023 - 17:12
The South Korean finished first with a time of 2hr 24.20min on 137km from New Bình Dương City of Bình Dương Province to Phước Long Town of Bình Phước Province.


The 2023 International Bình Dương Television Cycling Tournament lures eight local and international teams to compete from January 5-11. Jang Kyunggu of South Korea won the first stage on January 5. Photo of Cycling News

HÀ NỘI — South Korean Jang Kyunggu excelled in the first stage of the International Bình Dương Television Cycling Tournament, taking the yellow jersey and finishing nearly three minutes faster than the rest of the pack.

The South Korean finished first with a time of 2: 24.20 on 137km from New Bình Dương City of Bình Dương Province to Phước Long Town of Bình Phước Province.

Jang separated from the peloton early and gradually extended the gap from other cyclists until the end, almost three minutes ahead of teammate Jun Jaebin in second. Roman Maikin of Lộc Trời An Giang came third.

Jang will wear the yellow jersey for the second, 128km stage from Gia Nghĩa City in Đắk Nông Province to Buôn Ma Thuột City in Đắk Lắk.

The tournament, known as the Number One Cup, will have seven stages from January 5 to 11. Cyclists will pass almost 1,000km through eight cities and provinces from Bình Dương Province to Lâm Đồng Province, a route that combines flat-surface roads and curving tracks that go over hills and along the coast.

According to the organisers, eight teams, including two from South Korea and the Philippines, are participating in the event, which is back after two years of the pandemic.

To vie for the titles against powerful international visitors, local clubs have recruited foreign athletes to strengthen their teams.

Lộc Trời An Giang Team have the services of former Russian national team member Roman Maikin. Bình Minh Plastics from Bình Dương signed contracts with Daniel Ven Carino from the Philippines and Edgar Nieto from Spain. Domesco Đồng Tháp Pharmacy added to their regular faces with Loic Desriac.

HCM City's Vinama withdrew from the event at the last minute due to a lack of preparation time.

"The tournament is the first of 2023, which promises a busy year for cycling," said Nguyễn Ngọc Vũ, general secretary of the Việt Nam Cycling and Motor Sports Federation.

"The diverse-terrain routes of the tournament will help organisers and athletes evaluate their qualities and abilities. They will then have plans to develop themselves for further events."

He added that invited athletes from South Korea and the Philippines are strong. They are masters in mountain climbing and the tournament will be very tough, promising competitive attacks.

Organisers introduce jerseys for winners of the 2023 International Bình Dương Television Cycling Tournament. Photo

Among the stages, the third one from Buôn Ma Thuột City to Tuy Hoà City of Phú Yên Province is the longest one at 198km.

The fifth, from Nha Trang City of Khánh Hòa Province to Đà Lạt City of Lâm Đồng Province, will be the toughest one as cyclists will have to overcome the challenging Khánh Lê Pass. It is one of the longest mountain passes in Việt Nam, which spread over 33km linking Khánh Hòa and Lâm Đồng.

In addition to the races, organisers will also hold charity activities in localities that the tournament tours through. Live streams of all stages are available online.

Among the total bonus of about VNĐ400 million (US$17,000), the yellow jersey (best time) winner will walk away with VNĐ50 million; the blue jersey (best sprinter) athlete will receive VNĐ25 million, and the red polka dot jersey (King of Mountain) and white jersey (best young rider) ones will bag VNĐ10 million each.

The winning team will take a trophy and VNĐ30 million. VNS