Tour of Freestate Stage 1

A new tour on the calendar this year. The Freestate local government had great ambition to showcase their province as a tourist destination and saw cycling as an vechile, a great thing for sa pro cycling. The first stage started out on somewhat of rough circuit in Parys. 30 laps of 2.7km with every 5th lap a prime sprint with a 10s time bonus.

Racing got of fast with riders trying to split the bunch and move clear. It was quite dodgy in the begining and just before the first prime Tyler Day crashed over one of the bumps in road at 60kmph. He was hospitalized and confirmed a broken collarbone.

Anyway I manage to take out the first prime, the 2nd prime Nolan Hoffmann  me for 1st and I took the 4th prime again. The race took a long time to splitt but finally after the 4th prime a group of 10-12 rode away. We had JC Nel, Dennis van Niekerk and myself represented. Before the 5th prime Johann Rabie put in an attack, got a small gap and took the prime.

We had to ride hard to bring him back and as we got the bell he was brought back, but with the Europeans saving themselves in the chase of Rabie 2 of them countered and the rest hesitated for a couple of seconds and it was over. 2 of them had about a 3s gap as we crossed the finish.

Today we ride 116km from Bethlehem to Fouriesburg, Clarens and back to Bethlehem. Looking forward to some decent racing today

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