Blida to Djbabra – 140.8km
Following a successful performance in the first three races at the ongoing Grand Tour d'Algerie, Team Rwanda Cycling has turned focus on the Tour International de Blida which starts today with the Blida to Djbabra route, a total distance of 140.8km.
The Rwandan riders travelled by road for six hours covering a distance of 500km yesterday from Oran to Blida but head coach Jonathan ‘Jock’ Boyer said, “Our riders recovered well so we should continue to improve as the days go on.”
Boyer hailed the team’s performance that saw Janvier Hadi become the first Rwandan rider to win a race in Algeria when he clinched the Grand Prix de la Ville d’Oran, a feat that earned him 40 points on the UCI Africa Tour.
Boyer narrated Hadi’s victory, “Janvier played a very smart race, especially on the last three laps when he was in a group of only seven riders.”
“He attacked before the last turn and risked everything in the turn. There was only 300 meters after the last turn and Janvier has an exceptional punch that nobody can match in the last meters, so he took the victory.”
Boyer, who was the first American to ride at the prestigious Tour de France, understands the importance of international cycling.
He said, “It is a big difference from last year where we did well but still lacked experience. Everybody is very impressed with how much the team has improved over the last year. We beat five strong Algerian teams at home.
It was probably the best race they raced ever tactically, every time there was a breakaway there was at least one or two Rwandan riders. Even in all the counter attacks we were always represented.
Both Bonaventure Uwizeyimana and Joseph Biziyaremye were constantly in groups and did massive work for the others.
“ I had told Jeremie, Valens and Bosco to take it easy today and gain some reserves for the next races but they ended up racing hard which just showed they recovered well from yesterday’s (Monday) hard day.”
The Grand Tour of Algeria started on March 6 and will go on till March 30 with 15 teams competing in a total of 10 tours.