Race: 2018 Tour of Hainan, stage 5
Start/Finish: Qionghai / Wanning, China
Distance: 142 kilometers
LINGSHUI, CHN – Team Novo Nordisk’s Sam Brand found success in the main split of the bike race on Saturday, as the 2018 Tour of Hainan picked up for stage five and headed into the hills.
Brand took his speed and fitness with him when the pace picked up, and rode through with the leaders over 178km from Wanning to Lingshui. Light rain fell late in the race, cooling temperatures also greeted the riders after a week of hot and humid days.
Stagewinner Manuel Belletti led the group across the line, with Brand in the same time of 4:09:07. Sunday is another hilly day, with two top category climbs and many more lesser inclines on a 193km day from Lingshui to Wuzhishan.
“Today ended being a pretty hard and fast race, with a lot of climbing early on in the stage. A little bit of rain, but not too bad. The breakaway never really stuck, so it was really aggressive and fast racing. It ended being split, with 40 or 50 riders being in the front split, midway through the first half of the race. And we managed to get Sam Brand in that front split, so things went well.
Tomorrow we go into stage 6, and it’s going to be a little bit longer, with more climbing and some category 1 climbs, 190kms, so it should be a long day at the office.”
1st: Manuel Belletti (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec): 4:09:07
2nd: Jannik Steimle (Team Vorarlberg Santic): same time as Belletti
3rd: Raymond Kreder (Team UKYO): ”
53rd: Sam Brand: ”
(Photos: ©Anne Wu)