Tough Climbing on Penultimate Stage at Tour of Hainan

04 November 2017

Race: Tour of Hainan, stage 8

Start/Finish: Wuzhishan/Lingshui, China

Distance: 197 kilometers

LINGSHUI, CHINA – Team Novo Nordisk faced a category one climb at the beginning of stage eight in the Tour of Hainan on Saturday, then worked through warm tropical rain, a slippery descent and a long chase back down to the southern Chinese seacoast.

Gerd De Keijzer crashed and withdrew, and has small cuts and a sore body after returning to the race hotel. Mehdi Benhamouda also pulled over on a day that lost 10% of the riders in the peloton.

With one stage remaining, Team Novo Nordisk will line up for Sunday’s final stage along the southern coast of the tourism-oriented tropical Chinese resort island of Hainan with four riders on the last day of active competition for the American Pro Continental team in 2017.

Umberto Poli:

The first part with the climb was hard, just 9km, but enough to split up the race. Then the rains began. We are tired and need to focus on recovery to get ready for tomorrow and the last stage.”

Team Novo Nordisk Sport Director Massimo Podenzana:

“Rain today, and a first category climb right at the start. That made a selection of 40 at the front, and we had Joonas and Umberto closest. Gerd crashed out on the descent, but he’s ok: and Mehdi is also out after 100km today. A hard day, a hard stage on a hard day.”



  • Marco Zanotti (Monkey Town Cycling Team) 1st : 4:57:47
  • Marco Maronese(Bardiani – CSF) 2nd : st
  • Emils Liepins(Delko Marseille Provence KTM) 3rd : st

Team Novo Nordisk:

  • Joonas Henttala 61st : 21:55 back
  • Umberto Poli 62nd : 21:55 back
  • Sam Brand 68th : 26:24 back
  • Reid McClure 69th : 26:24 back
  • Gerd de Keijzer : DNF
  • Mehdi Benhamouda : DNF

(Photos: ©Anne Wu)

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