Cycling: Uwizeyimana wins Tour du Cameroun

Bonaventure Uwizeyimana poses with his medal in Cameroon yesterday. Courtesy.

Sunday

Stage 8 – Top three
1. Ghislain Sikandi – 3:10:47
2.  Artuce Tella – 3:10:47
3. Jakub Varhaňovský – 3:12:19

General Classification –Top three
1. Bonaventure Uwizeyimana – 21:53:20
2. Martin Haring – 21: 56:58                        
3. Martin Mahdar – 21: 57:21

Youth ranking
1. Jean Paul Rene Ukiniwabo – 21:59:04                 
2. Cully Ján – 21: 59:05
3. Lars Quaedvlieg – 21:59:46         

Team ranking
1.  Rwanda – 65:49:01
2.  Dukla Banská Bystrica – 65:50:18
3.  SNH Vélo Club – 66:05:51

BONAVENTURE Uwizeyimana has become the first Rwandan cyclist to win the annual Tour du Cameroun. The 25-year old was crowned champion of the elite race’s 15th edition yesterday in Cameroonian capital – Yaoundé.

 

Not only was it Uwizeyimana’s historic first professional triumph in a UCI sanctioned race, it was also Team Rwanda’s maiden win at the 8-stage race in the West African country since marking her first appearance in 2010.

 

Despite finishing in the seventh place, in the last stage (Stage 8) on Sunday afternoon from Bafia to Yaoundé, a distance of 122.8 Kilomètres, the former Dimension Data for Qhubeka’s rider clinched the race unrivaled, with a commanding 3 minutes and 38 seconds ahead of first runner-up Martin Haring.

 

Uwizeyimana held onto the yellow jersey since Stage 5 last Wednesday and never looked back ever since. Instead, he kept stretching the lead atop.

He clocked the least time of 21 hours, 53 minutes and 20 seconds to claim the nine-day race, while his closest contestant Martin Haring from Slovakia’s Dukla Banská Bystrica posted 21:56:58, followed by teammate Martin Mahdar (21:57:21) in the third place.

The reigning Rwanda Cycling Cup champion Patrick Byukusenge was Team Rwanda’s second best rider, finishing in fourth spot after using 21 hours, 58 minutes and 45 seconds.

Byukusenge’s latest exploits implies that Team Rwanda have scooped four of the five international races it has participated in since last November; including the 2017 Tour du Rwanda, the 2018 La Tropicale Amissa Bongo of Gabon and the inaugural Tour de l’Espoir in Cameroun - all won by Joseph Areruya who currently rides for French side Delko–Marseille Provence KTM.

Meanwhile, fast-rising youngster Rene Jean Paul Rene Ukiniwabo won the best young rider award, beating Slovak Cully Ján of Dukla Banská Bystrica by just one second.

In team classification, Felix Sempoma’s Team Rwanda topped the rankings, followed Dukla Banská Bystrica of Slovakia and Cameroon’s SNH Vélo Club in second and third place respectively.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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