Bouglas wins stage 5, Chalapud retains yellow jersey at Tour of Qinghai Lake

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-18 22:00:28|Editor: mingmei
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CAKA, China, July 18 (Xinhua) -- Greek rider Georgios Bouglas won stage five for the Ningxia Sports Lottery at the Tour of Qinghai Lake on Thursday, overcoming an arduous route of 173 kilometers and chilly headwind drizzle to win after a strong sprint finish in 4:34:00.

Monkey Town rider Bas Van der Kooij from the Netherlands finished second and Italian rider Luca Pacioni of Neri Selle Italia KTM was third.

Colombian rider Robinson Chalapud extended his overall lead through a gritty performance to keep the yellow jersey for Medellin in a total of 14:09:51, 32 seconds ahead of his teammates Oscar Sevilla and Cristhian Montoya.

The 173km stage five, the second-longest in the 13-stage tournament, started in Gonghe county and finished at the scenic salt lake resort in Caka town, with cold weather and strong winds on Thursday making the race more complicated.

Six riders - Niccola Gaffurini (Monkey Town), Mario Vogt (Sapura Cycling), Yauhen Sobal (Minsk Cycling Club), Jose Ferreira (W52 FC Porto), Jiang Zhihui (Mitchelton Bike Exchange) and Zhang Zhishan (Tianyoude Hotel Cycling) - broke away from the peloton a few kilometers into the race and managed to build up a gap of up to four minutes over the main group, but the pack caught up with 15 kilometers remaining. Bouglas stood out in the last-gasp sprint to take the stage victory.

Chalapud downplayed the influence of the harsh weather, and said he was optimistic about Medellin's chances on the Tour.

"The chilly weather and the strong wind is not a problem for me," said the Colombian. "For the Colombian riders, it's not strange in our training."

"We are a great team and I believe we can have a good result in this year's race. We can achieve more in the remaining stages and we are here to win the general classification."

He attributed his success to good teamwork. "The team did great work to get me to the finish line and protected me throughout the entire stage. I feel very good and we will see how the next stages go."

The top three teams remain the same in the team rankings after five stages, as Medellin is in the leading position in 40:51:29, followed by Chinese team Tianyoude Hotel Cycling (3:01 behind) and Delko Marseille Provence of France (5:23 behind).

Iran's Saeid Safarzadeh from Tianyoude Hotel Cycling took the honor of best Asian rider in 14:12:59. Artur Fedosseyev of Kazakhstan is still in second for Shenzhen Xidesheng Cycling (1:51 behind) and China's Liu Jiankun continues to be in third for Mitchelton-BikeExchange (2:04) in the Asian riders' classification.