Muhanga to Rubavu – 140km
1. Joseph Aleluya (Les Amis Sportifs) 3:45:00
2. Patrick Byukusenge (Benediction) 3:45:00
3. Valens Ndayisenga (Les Amis Sportifs) 3:45:00
4. Camera Hakuzimana (Les Amis Sportifs) 3:45:00
5. Abraham Ruhumuriza (CCA) 3:45:00
In a very exciting and closely contested sprint finish, teenage sensation Joseph Aleluya emerged winner of Saturday’s Rwanda Cycling Cup event from Muhanga to Rubavu, a total distance of 140km.
The 19-year old Les Amis Sportifs upcoming rider sprinted to the finish line beating Benediction’s Patrick Byukusenge, who thought he had won as he celebrated pointing his finger to the heavens before the finish line but Aleluya beat him to the line.
Aleluya, who was third on the Rwanda Cycling Cup table standings benefited from his teammates’ efforts as Valens Ndayisenga and Jean Claude Uwizeye chased down Benediction’s Bonaventure Uwizeyimana who had established a three-minute lead in a solo breakaway in Ngororero.
Ndayisenga and Uwizeye led the peloton that also had Benediction’s Nathan Byukusenge, Camera Hakuzimana, Jean-Bosco Nsengimana and Patrick through the hills of Kabaya.
As they approached Sashwara, the heavy rain would not deter the Rwamagana-based trio who were determined to win this stage to give an advantage to Aleluya going into today’s race from Rubavu to Kigali, the last event of the Rwanda Cycling Cup that started in April this year.
“My teammates worked so hard to see to it that I won today. Valens and Claude split the Benediction riders into two groups and we made sure the sprinters like Bonaventure and Hadi are behind us so that we had less sprinters in the peloton, three,” explained Aleluya.
Ndayisenga added that, “Benediction is a very good and strong team. There is no way Aleluya can beat Bonaventure and Hadi in a sprint finish because they are better than him so we had to make sure we drop them and then he would have a chance at winning.”
This is the second race that Aleluya has won in Rubavu having emerged winner of the Kivu race on the same route.