Apr 7, 2015


Andrea makes his 18th win at Kuala Lumpur
Stage 8 winners, Andrea Guardini (1st), Caleb Ewan (2nd) and Micheal Kolar (3rd)
Best Asian and Overall Team Classification goes to Pegasus Cycling Team from Indonesia 
The Jersey winners of LTdL 2015 (L-R) Caleb Ewan (OGE) in Blue 'Sprint' Jersey,  Youcef Reguigui (MTN)  in Yellow 'Overall Classification' Jersey, Kiel Reijnen (UHC) in Red 'KOM' Jersey, Tomihiro Hayakawa (AIS) in White 'Best Asian' Jersey.

KUALA LUMPUR, Sunday 15th March 2015 - Astana's Andrea Guardini added another victory to his collection after ending the 20th edition of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) the same way he started it, with a win in a bunch sprint ahead of Orica GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan n the final stage from Kuala Kubu Bharu to Kuala Lumpur today.
It was Guardini's 18th ever LTdL stage win, coming on a day when MTN-Qhubeka's Youcef Reguigui confirmed his first ever overal victory as a professional as he emerged with the yellow jersey he won on the decisive Stage 7 yesterday.  
When he tried hard to stop Ewan and third placed Michael Kolar of Tinkoff-Saxo in the final sprint, Guardini, who lost three teammates to food poisoning a day earlier had to sprint early with 200 metres to go and completed the stage in a time of 2:00.27s.
The final stage saw Reguigui crowned as the overall winner of LTdL 2015 after the Algerian sprinter chose not to take too many risks in challenging Guardini and Ewan as he did in the earlier stages and finish 10th on the day.
Reguigui clocked a total time of 28 hours 12 minutes and 04 seconds to emerge the overall winner over the eight stages contested this time around. He finished 9 seconds ahead of Astana's Valerio Agnoli and 10 seconds ahead of third placed Sebastian Henao.
The red jersey for the mountains classification remained in the hands of United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen, who took charge of the lead from the first stage in Langkawi and brought it to the finish to be crowned the king of the mountains of this edition.
Orica GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan, wins the blue jersey for the points classification. Ewan and the team initially came to LTdL targeting only a stage win but their performance exceeded their own expectations, bagging two stage wins, a few days in the yellow jersey and also winning  the overall points classification.
The Asian riders classification was won by Japan's Tomihiro Hayakawa of Aisan Racing Team.
The surprise of this edition was the rise of Indonesia's Pegasus Cycling Team, who bagged both the Asian and overall teams classification title.
Guardini thanked his two remaining teammates - Agnoli and Maxat Ayazbayev - for the effort they put in for him to bag his fourth win of this edition.
"It was tough by this was a race that I wanted to win and I also wanted to help Agnoli get second place in the general classification and we achieved both," said Guardini.
"I knew what to expect in this final stage. It is a win that is special and I hope this will give a good year for my career." Guardini, as he did in the opening stage in Langkawi, repeated his win in the final stage in his debut year with Farnese-Vini in 2011.
Asked if he would return next year, Guardini who's contract with Astana expires at the end of the year, hoped he could return to the race, but wasn't sure of the team he would represent next.
Reguigui, for whom this is the biggest ever win in his professional career, admitted he had just started his pre-season training before coming to Malaysia and took a bit of time to acclimatise before showing his true colours when he won Stage 7 from Shah Alam to Frasers Hill.
"I would like to congratulate all my teammates and I am happy with this yellow jersey although it was supposed to be Natnael Berhane who took it in Frasers Hill," said Reguigui, 25.

"In this final stage, my team controlled the pace from the beginning until the final two laps of the circuit before leaving it to Astana and Orica GreenEdge. I wanted to challenge in the sprint, but I didn't want to take any risks."

Apr 6, 2015


Youcef Reguigui wins at Frasers Hill, while Team Sky's Sebastian Henao takes 2nd and Valerio Agnoli of Astana in 3rd
The leaders after stage 7

FRASERS HILL, Saturday 14th March 2015 - MTN-Qhubeka's Youcef Reguigui sprinted to the line to take the biggest win of his career when he won the queen stage of the 20th edition of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL), a gruelling 180.8km stage from Shah Alam to Frasers Hill today.
The victory also gave the 25-year old Reguigui the overall lead which he is likely to keep in the final stage tomorrow and emerge the third African rider to win LTdL's covered overall title after South Africans Ryan Cox in 2005 and David George in 2006.
Reguigui formed part of an 11-man breakaway that started with 25km to go and went all the way to the finish line where the Algerian outsprinted Colombia's Sebastian Henao of Team Sky to the finish. Astana's Valerio Agnoli took third place.
"I am very happy with this win, especially since I had a son one month ago, so I dedicate this win to him," said Reguigui.
"This was a tough stage, especially when you do the climb after 180 kilometres. With 25km to go, I was lucky to be in front with that group and I had two teammates - Natnael Berhane and Jacques Janse van Rensburg with me, so I knew we had a good chance," said Reguigui.
"We were looking to Berhane, because he is the climber. But with eight km to go I saw that he didn't have the legs for this, so I decided to go for it myself. I am normally a sprinter, but I can climb a little bit and today I was feeling good, so I am very proud to have delivered this win.
"I hope this form will put me on the right track to the Tour de France. Because we are the first African team to ride in the Tour de France this year."
Orica GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan, who led the general classification before today, lost the overall lead but retained the blue jersey for the points classification.
"I knew it was going to be tough to keep the yellow jersey today, but I gave it my best shot and in the end I just didn't have the legs for this. But overall, it has already been a good tour for me. My first pro race outside of Australia and I have two stage wins. Tomorrow we will maybe try for another win," said Ewan, 21.
The red jersey for the mountains classification leader was a done deal today with United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen holding on to a comfortable 19 points lead ahead of Reguigui, which will now be insurmountable as there will only be one category 4 climb remaining in the final stage.
Aisan Racing Team's Tomohiro Hayakawa swept the Asian riders classification lead away from Giant-Champion System's Zhang Wen Long after he finished 16th and he now holds a 1:03s lead over second placed Liu Jianpeng of Hengxiang Cycling Team, which is unlikely to be affected.
LTdL's 20th edition will end tomorrow with a 96.6km Stage 8 that starts in Kuala Kubu Bharu before entering a procession of six laps in a circuit around the Kuala Lumpur city centre.


Win number 2 for Ewan at Karak
The stage 6 winners

KARAK, Friday 13th March 2015 - Orica GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan took his second stage win in Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) 2015 in a bunch sprint in Stage 6 from Kuantan to Karak today.
Ewan, 21, beat Team Southeast's Jakub Mareczko to the win as favourite Andrea Guardini faltered to finish fifth on the day, not adding to his record 17 stage wins as predicted by many before the start of the 96.6km stage, the shortest of this year's race.
The stage saw a four-man breakaway escape from the peloton and were caught with 20km to go as Guardini's Astana team launched a chase.
The sprint was set-up for Guardini, but he slipped down and only managed to sprint to fifth, as Ewan registered his second win of the year in his first race outside of Australia as a pro.
"It was a good sprint and my team led me out well. I was in a good position to make the jump and I just went for it. I was looking out for Guardini, but then I saw he had some trouble and wasn't coming up, so I just gave it my all," said Ewan, who also won Stage Three from Gerik to Tanah Merah on Tuesday.
Ewan's win meant he also retained the overall lead and the points classification lead, which he will have to defend in the tough Stage 7 from Shah Alam to Frasers Hill tomorrow.
"I can climb a bit on my day, biut I'm not a really good climber. I'll see how it goes, but for sure I will fight to keep the yellow jersey all the way," said Ewan.
Ewan also stated his intention of keeping both the yellow and blue jerseys until the end in Dataran Merdeka on Sunday, while United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen looks in a comfortable position to confirm his king of the mountains jersey win with a big points gap between second placed Natnael Berhane of MTN-Qhubeka and himself in the mountains classification.
There will be a mouthwatering seven-way battle for the Asian riders' classification in Stage 7 tomorrow with leader Zhang Wen Long of Giant-Champion System holding on to a slim lead with the top seven riders only separated by two seconds.
Second placed Liu Jianpeng of Hengxiang is level on time with Zhang, with third placed Robin Manullang of Pegasus just a second behind, fourth placed Tomohiro Hayakawa of Aisan Racing Team, fifth placed Andrey Zeits of Astana, sixth placed Chelly Aristya and seventh placed Dadi Suryadi, both of Pegasus, are all just 2 seconds off Zhang's lead.
Stage 7 will feature three tough climbs at Bukit Cherakah, Genting Sempah and the finish at Frasers Hill in a 170km route that will likely decide the 20th winner of LTdL


The peloton passes the beautiful east coast state of Terengganu 
Seo Joon Yong (KSPO) takes a solo win at Kuantan
Pegasus's Jamalidin Noverdianto in 2nd while TSG's Adiq Husainie in 3rd place
KUANTAN, Thursday 12th March 2015 - Seo Joon Yong slayed the ghost of two years ago as he finally rose to the top step of the podium with his first ever stage after a solo attempt to take victory in Stage 5 of Le Tour de Langkawi 2015, at 200km the longest stage of this year's race from Kuala Terengganu to Kuantan today.
The 27-year old was part of a group of eight riders that launched an attack at 60km into the stage and went all the way with an uninterested peloton just managing to cut a gap that expanded to over 18 minutes at one point to 5 minutes and 20s at the finish line, as Seo rode solo for the last 25km to finish 13s ahead of second placed Jamalidin Novardianto of Pegasus Cycling, who ousprinted TSG's Adiq Husainie Othman to take second place.
Seo was only the second South Korean to win a stage in LTdL and the 11th Asian, as he stated his pride in finally winning.
Seo, Jamalidin and Adiq had earlier been joined by Malaysia's Loh Sea Keong, Pegasus' Rastra Patria, Colombia's Juan Sebastian Molano Benevides and Skydive Dubai's Maher Hasnaoui in the breakaway, but the South Korean's solo attack had left the others surprised and unable to react until it was too late.
"Two years ago in Kuantan, it was also a breakaway, but I lost in a sprint (to Colnago-CSF Inox's Marco Canola). So this time I didn't want that to happen again and I didn't want to let it end the same way. Thus at 25km to go, I decided to launch an early attack to try and win on my own," said Seo.
"I am proud of this win because it was hard-earned. Every year I come to LTdL and I try to do something. This time I managed to win a stage."
Orica-GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan remained in the yellow jersey, as he admitted it was always going to be a breakaway win today.
"When the breakaway went, we thought it would be okay. We could take a break and see how it goes after four days of hard racing in the heat. For us, it was okay and we thought that if others want to give it a go and catch the breakaway then go for a bunch sprint, we would join in and help, but nobody looked interested," said Ewan, who also remains in the points classification lead.
United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen also stayed in the lead of the mountains classification with a lead of 37 points, 19 more than second placed Natnael Berhane of MTN-Qhubeka. Giant-Champion System's Zhang Wen Long also remains the leading Asian rider in the race.
Stage Six tomorrow is the shortest stage of the race at 96.6km, which will be expected to finish in another bunch sprint.


Stage 4 starts at Kota Bahru
Andra takes his 3rd win at LTdL 2015
Winners of Stage 4

KUALA BERANG, Wednesday 11th March 2015 - Andrea Guardini again proved unstoppable in a bunch spritn when the Astana Pro Team rider took his third win of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) 2015 in a bunch sprint in Stage Four from Kota Baru to Kuala Berang today.
Guardini, 27, beat Team Southeast's Jakub Mareczko to the finish line, with Orica-GreenEdge's Caleb Ewan finishing third this time but held on to both the overall general classification and points classification leads. This was also Guardini's 17th ever win in the race's history, extending even further his already impressive record.
"I am happy with the way the sprint went. I managed a really good sprint to take this win. Today was a really fast paced stage with the speed in the earlier part already very high at 50 to 60 kp/h," said Guardini.
"I then had a good lead-out and I took a good risk, then the job was done. For the moment, this is a good result. But for now, I think I can do more than this."
A five-man breakaway of United Healthcare's Jonathan Clarke, Bretagne-Seche Environnement's Pierre-Luc Perichon, Synergy Baku's Elchin Asadov, Skydive Dubai's Vladimir Gusev and Pegasus Jamalidin Novardianto escaped the peloton after 30km of the 165km stage and they took all the intermediate points on offer for the day before the peloton caught them 2km from the finish.
Ewan lost out to Guardini and had to settle for third this time, but was not raising his hopes to much when asked about his chances of keeping the overall lead to the end of the race.
"I climbed well yesterday and tried to just stay in the group. But I'm not really a pure climber. I prefer to sprint. It depends on the day. If I feel good on the day, then I can climb well, but if I don't then it will be the other way around," said Ewan, who won Stage 3 yesterday after surviving the tough climb across the summit of Titiwangsa.
United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen retained the mountains classification lead, as did Asian riders classification leader Zhang Wen Long of the Giant-Champion System team.
Stage Five is the longest stage of the race at 200km from Kuala Terengganu to Kuantan with coastal crosswinds and undulating terrain providing a different challenge to the peloton, which could provide an opportunity for a differnet rider to take the top step of the podium.


Stage 3 winners
Ewan takes the lead while Zhang Wen Long leads the Asian Classification

TANAH MERAH, Tuesday 10th March 2015 - Caleb Ewan registered his first professional win outside of his native Australia in dramatic circumstances, taking the overall lead in the 20th edition of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) after a sprint from a group of 40 to win Stage 3 from Gerik to Tanah Merah today.
The Orica Greenedge rider, 21, made a strong effort to stay in a chase group that proved to be decisive at the end of the day, as they crested the summit of Titiwangsa after two tough categorised climbs, and then found no match from the sprinters that stayed with him as he brushed aside MTN-Qhubeka's Youcef Reguigui to second spot and Colombia's Leonardo Duque finished third.
Ewan wrested both the leads in the general and points classifications from Astana's Andrea Guardini, who suffered across the summits of both climbs of the day to struggle home more than 24 minutes behind the stage winner's group.
"I saw Guardini suffer, so I did all I could to stay in that chase group. He was dropped and then as we descended I knew we had a good chance of catching the breakaway that had gone earlier," said Ewan.
The five-man breakaway of United Healthcare's Kiel Reijnen, MTN Qhubeka's Natnael Berhane, Bretagne-Seche Environnement's Frederic Brun and the Skydive Dubai duo of Francisco Mancebo and Soufiane Haddi had moved ahead of the peloton before the first climb up a category 2 summit in Gerik.
That saw Reijnen sweep top points in both that and the category 1 summit at Titiwangsa to put a big gap of 19 points between himself and second placed Berhane in the mountains classification. Reijnen said he is now looking to take the red jersey to the finish in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, in what he describes as the biggest race of his career to date.
Ewan will also be looking for more wins, beginning with Stage 4 from Kota Baru to Kuala Berang tomorrow, where the flat profile with a small category 4 climb coming near the finish.
"My legs were feeling good today and I think it will be better tomorrow, so we will try to go for more wins. Hopefully I can climb up Frasers to keep the jersey," said Ewan.
Giant Champion System's Zhang Wen Long took over the lead in the Asian riders classification from Terengganu Cycling Team's Adiq Husainie Othman after finishing in the winner's group today.
Zhang said he was happy to have the jersey as he got assistance from the Hengxiang Cycling Team riders but will be looking at performing better in the coming stages without thinking of the jersey.
"I always enter a race with a positive attitude and I feel good about this race. Today we had some help from the Hengxiang riders and we managed to get the jersey. I've been racing hard everyday and here the weather is a problem, so at the moment I am looking to race well in the remaining stages without thinking about the jersey," said Zhang.

Stage Four tomorrow will offer a chance for another bunch sprint with a fairly flat 165.4km route from Kota Baru to Kuala Berang, where Guardini could be expected to bounce back to challenge Ewan should the outcome be decided in a bunch sprint.