Youngster Ran Hao held onto to the white jersey to claim the best Chinese rider classification on the final stage of the Tour of China I.
Hao made it into the right side of the decisive split alongside teammate Nazaerbieke Bieken, with the duo taking the top two placings in the best Chinese rider classification. That performance also saw Mitchelton-BikeExchange take the best Chinese title with Hao and Bieken, the only local riders to make the front group on the final day.
It was a dramatic last day to tour, with several teams trying to split the race apart as they went in search of valuable seconds. Eventually, a small group managed to get clear as the peloton split, with Hao and Bieken making it into the move.
The group managed to stay away to contest the finish with Mykhaylo Kononenko (Shenzhen Xidesheng) taking the win, while Jeroen Meijers (Taiyuan Miogee) held onto the overall race lead to take the title.
“It was a crazy stage, with many teams and riders trying to take points and bonus seconds. After many attacks, a small group of riders crossed the finish line ahead of the peloton which only contained around 30 riders.”
“Bieken and I were the only Chinese riders in the front group, and that means we can take first and second on the general classification of the greater China riders. After all, I’m very happy to take the white jersey home and the past week has been a great experience in my first road race season. Now I’m ready to do an even better job in the Tour of China II.”
Dave Sanders (Sports Director):
“Ran and Bieken both did well to make it into the final front group and that means they take first and second overall in the best Chinese rider GC. That also meant that team finished first in the Chinese teams classification as well, so it’s been a good week for us.”
Tour of China I Stage 6 Results:
1. Mykhaylo Kononenko (Shenzhen Xidesheng) 2:56:22
2. Alessandro Pessot (Bardiani – CSF) ST
20. Ran Hao (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) +0:08
Tour of China I General Classification:
1. Jeroen Meijers (Taiyuan Miogee Cycling Team) 11:23:28
2. Roy Eefting (Memil – CCN Pro Cycling) +0:15
22. Ran Hao (Mitchelton-BikeExchange) +0:52