Team Novo Nordisk also presented itself offensive in the final of the Tour of China. In this stage of the race with its extremely demanding 137.2 km (85.3m) from Songkan to Zunyi, Javier Megias was one of the protagonists of the leading group during the ride with four mountain classifications. On the first mountain after only 9.8 km as well as on the second after 44.4 km, which was the only HC mountain classification of the whole tour, the 29-year old gained his points. By this the Spaniard was, at least virtually, leader of the mountain ranking again only one day after he had to pass on the dotted jersey. In the third mountain classification, however, Megias had to take his toll to his offensive ride and lost important points when he came through sixth. “What a pity, I tried everything but it wasn’t enough”, says the tour specialist of the world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team, who finally finished second in the mountain ranking.
Although having again extrem temperatures, Megias rode in the leading group until the final and was 12th in the end. His compatriot David Lozano reached the finish in the first big chasing group behind the yellow jersey. The sprinters around Andrea Peron, again wearing the blue sprint jersey by proxy, as well as Martijn Verschoor arrived with the main field. Peron was just as Megias in the mountain classification second in the overall sprint classification.
“The team showed strong courage again here in China. With our message of changing diabetes we were present in every stage, had the mountain jersey for a day and rode two days in the sprint jersey and Andrea Peron was on the podium of two stages as third. Moreover, we are second overall in the mountain and sprint classification and only missed a stage win just by a few centimeters twice. This was an impressive presentation under not so easy circumstances” says Vassili Davidenko, Corporate Vice President Cycling Operation of Team Novo Nordisk. “It’s important now to use well the two days before the start of the next tour and to reclaim energy as fast as possible. I think, with the kick from this success there is still more potential.”
With this stage, part 1 of the Tour of China comes to an end. After a further bus and flight transfer to Changsha the second part will take off on Monday. Without any big topographic obstacles the Tour of China II could offer some chances for the sprinters. Both tours are recorded as independent races with a complete new ranking.
Lineup of Team Novo Nordisk for the Tour of China
There are racing riders from five nations the Tour of China for Team Novo Nordisk:
The lineup for China:
Kevin de Mesmaeker, BEL, 22
Joonas Henttala, FIN, 21
David Lozano Riba, ESP, 24
Javier Megias Leal, ESP, 29
Andrea Peron, ITA, 24
Martijn Verschoor, NED, 28.