Tour de Taiwan: Pozdnyakov takes opening stage

Russian neo pro uses the wind to score first international victory at 24

At only their second race after Le Tour de Langkawi, Kirill Pozdnyakov and his newly created Synergy Baku Cycling Project team from Azerbaijan have found success at the 25th Tour de Taiwan. The Russian neo-pro collected his first pro victory at the end of stage 1 called “Terrific Taiwan”, ahead of his last breakaway companion Cheung King Lok from Hong Kong, while the peloton didn’t manage to catch them and Christoph Schweizer completed Baku’s triumph by winning the bunch sprint eight seconds later.

“I’m very happy”, Pozdnyakov said. “To win such a hard and nice race brings me a lot of emotions. I wasn’t afraid of the return of the peloton because I was just giving 100 per cent of myself. It worked out well today because we formed a very good group at the front. Normally it’s very difficult to stay away on a flat terrain but we managed to do so because the peloton was tired and it made the race less controllable. I’m grateful to Jeremy Hunt, David McCann and David McQuaid to have put this team together. It’s a very professional environment. It gives me my first opportunity to race in Asia, firstly at Le Tour de Langkawi and now here.”

At the end of last year, McQuaid sealed a deal with the Azeri authorities with the aim of developing local riders for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016. A few experienced cyclists, including recently retired Hunt and McCann, were hired to help them reach their goal.

Pozdnyakov is one of them. At the age of 24, he found fame in Belgium where he won nineteen races as a junior including the U19 version of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. With the VL Technics Abutriek team, he won the Tour de Côte d’Or in France last year and finished 3rd at the GP Geluwe and 5th at the Flèche ardennaise.

“Normally, climbing is no problem for me”, said the man from Bryansk. “I’ll try to defend the yellow jersey. For GC, we also have other options, with [Denmark’s] John Ebsen for example.” Stage 2 in the county of Tainan is expected to be the queen stage of the race of the Tour de Taiwan after the peloton has left the windy conditions of the Dapeng Bay in the far south of the country behind.

“The wind has been my ally”, Pozdnyakov noted. Initially, South African Pro Continental team MTN-Qhubeka showed their ambition when Johan van Zyl was the first man to attack after 7km of racing but without being granted any freedom. Another motivated team appeared to be French outfit La Pomme-Marseille as they were represented by four riders a major 20-man breakaway. However, only after half way into the stage, a decisive move took place with eight riders going clear off the peloton: Chris Jennings (La Pomme-Marseille), Jakub Kratochvila (Arbö), Jacques Janse van Rensburg (MTN-Qhubeka), Sai-Udomsin Puchong and Liphongyu Navuti (Thailand), Kohei Uchima (Japan), Cheung and Pozdnyakov.

As they never got an advantage superior to one and half minutes, a bunch sprint finish was highly expected but Pozdnyakov had kept some energy to launch an attack while riding against the wind over a bridge with 4km to go. Only Cheung managed to go across but GC contender Janse van Rensburg was forced to give up all of his hopes of winning the Tour de Taiwan due to cramps. There’s obviously more to be seen from rookie Pozdnyakov and the new task force born in one more former Republic of the Soviet Union that has fallen in love with cycling.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Kirill Pozdnyakov (Rus) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team3:15:24 
2King Lok Cheung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
3Christoph Scweizer (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team0:00:08 
4Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
5Benjamin Giraud (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille  
6Takeaki Ayabe (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
7Robbie Hucker (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
8Benjamin Edmüller (Ger) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
9Bernard Sulzberger (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
10Anuar Manan (Mas) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
11Fabian Schnaidt (Ger) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
12Oddbjørn Klomtsen Andersen (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
13Zachary Bell (Can) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
14Grischa Janorschke (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
15Po Hung Wu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
16Adiq Othman (Mas) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
17Yordsuwan Setthawut (Tha) Thailand National Team  
18Lee Rodgers (GBr) CCN Cycling Team  
19Muhammad Fauzan Ahmad Lufti (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
20Mohd Shahrul Mat Amin (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
21David Clarke (GBr) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
22Hao Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
23Ohko Shimizu (Jpn) Japan National Team  
24Luke Keough (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
25Ian Bibby (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
26Sai-Udomsin Phuchong (Tha) Thailand National Team  
27Yin Chih Wang (Tpe) CCN Cycling Team  
28Thomas Palmer (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
29Liam Holohan (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
30Nathan Earle (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
31Masakazu Ito (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
32Kun Hung Hung (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
33Mark Dowling (Irl) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
34Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille  
35Andreas Müller (Aut) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
36Louis Meintjes (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
37Jai Crawford (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
38Dennis Van Niekerk (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
39Chun Kai Feng (Tpe) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
40Andrew Tennant (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
41Hui Zhang (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
42Sirironnachai Sarawut (Tha) Thailand National Team  
43En Huang (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
44Jonathan Clarke (Aus) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
45Max Walsleben (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
46Floris Goesinnen (Ned) DRAPAC Cycling  
47Jakub Kratochvila (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
48Mohammad Saufi Mat Senan (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
49Patrick Shaw (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
50Yoshimitsu Hiratsuka (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
51Tsgabu Grmay (Eth) MTN Qhubeka  
52Sigurd Nesset (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
53John Kronborg Ebsen (Den) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
54Morten Sandvik (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
55Ki Ho Choi (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
56Brennan Townshend (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
57Dirk Müller (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
58Liphongyu Navuti (Tha) Thailand National Team  
59Boonratanathanakorn Thurakit (Tha) Thailand National Team  
60Mohd Saiful Anwar Azis (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
61Joseph Cooper (NZl) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
62Halvor Tandrevold (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
63Mart Ojavee (Est) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
64Yuzuru Suzuki (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
65Chen Lu Qin (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
66Ryan Sherlock (Irl) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
67Kohei Uchima (Jpn) Japan National Team  
68Johann Van Zyl (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
69Gordon Mccauley (NZl) DRAPAC Cycling  
70Burr Ho (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
71Christopher Jenninngs (RSA) Team La Pomme Marseille  
72Hsin Hua Huang (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
73Ryoma Nonaka (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
74Benjamin Sydlik (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
75Hayato Yoshida (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
76Petr Lechner (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
77Masahiko Yasui (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
78Mohd Nor Umardi Rosdi (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
79Dominic Jelfs (Irl) Madison Genesis Team0:01:14 
80Bradley White (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling0:02:05 
81Martyn Irvine (Irl) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
82Rick Ampler (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
83Yasuharo Nakajima (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team0:02:51 
84Yat Wai Chan (HKg) Team Hong Kong China0:00:08 
85Nur Arif Prayoga (Ina) Polygon Sweet Nice Team0:03:40 
86Yue Peng Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team0:05:32 
87Daniel Summerhill (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
88Yi Hao Tseng (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
89Mohd Nur Rizuan Zainal (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
90Shimpei Fukuda (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
91Che Wei Hu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida0:06:16 
92Shotaro Iribe (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team0:09:19 
93Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) MTN Qhubeka0:09:47 
94Chun Wing Leung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
95Ahmad Fahmi Farhan Ahmad Fuat (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
96Takero Terasaki (Jpn) Japan National Team  
97Hiroki Nishimura (Jpn) Japan National Team0:12:52 
OTLEivind Ekeli (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
OTLIbrahim Abdul Rashid (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
OTLRobert Gitelis (USA) CCN Cycling Team  
OTLJimmy Pranata (Ina) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
OTLRobert Bush (USA) Team La Pomme Marseille  
OTLCaleb James Jones (Aus) CCN Cycling Team  
DNFJafri Amirul Anuar (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
DNFJoshua Berry (USA) Team La Pomme Marseille  
DNFTomoyuki Iino (Jpn) Japan National Team  
DNFAntonius Tjondrokusumo-Christopher (Ina) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
DNFMuhammad Muhammad Hairolrani (Bru) CCN Cycling Team  
Points
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Kirill Pozdnyakov (Rus) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team17 pts
2King Lok Cheung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China14 
3Christoph Scweizer (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team13 
4Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser12 
5Benjamin Giraud (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille11 
6Takeaki Ayabe (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team10 
7Robbie Hucker (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling9 
8Benjamin Edmüller (Ger) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer8 
9Bernard Sulzberger (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling8 
10Grischa Janorschke (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS7 
11Fabian Schnaidt (Ger) Champion System Pro Cycling Team7 
12Anuar Manan (Mas) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team6 
13Hao Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team5 
14Jakub Kratochvila (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer5 
15Oddbjørn Klomtsen Andersen (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi4 
16Zachary Bell (Can) Champion System Pro Cycling Team3 
17Ian Bibby (GBr) Madison Genesis Team3 
18Sai-Udomsin Phuchong (Tha) Thailand National Team3 
19Gordon Mccauley (NZl) DRAPAC Cycling3 
20Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille2 
21Po Hung Wu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida1 
22Kohei Uchima (Jpn) Japan National Team1 
23Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) MTN Qhubeka1 
Teams
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team9:46:28 
2Team Hong Kong China  
3Champion System Pro Cycling Team0:00:08 
4DRAPAC Cycling  
5Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Advisers  
6Thailand National Team  
7Aisan Racing Team  
8ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
9Madison Genesis Team  
10Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
11Team La Pomme Marseille  
12NUTRIXXION ABUS  
13Team Frøy-Bianchi  
14Team Senter - Merida  
15MTN QhubekaMTN  
16Terengganu Cycling Team  
17Shimano Racing Team  
18UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling0:02:05 
19Polygon Sweet Nice Team0:03:40 
20Japan National Team0:09:47 
21Malaysia National Team0:15:11 
General classification after stage 1
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Kirill Pozdnyakov (Rus) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team3:15:24 
2King Lok Cheung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
3Christoph Scweizer (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team0:00:08 
4Grischa Janorschke (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
5Hao Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
6Jakub Kratochvila (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
7Ian Bibby (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
8Sai-Udomsin Phuchong (Tha) Thailand National Team  
9Gordon Mccauley (NZl) DRAPAC Cycling  
10Fabian Schnaidt (Ger) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
11Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille  
12Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
13Benjamin Giraud (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille  
14Takeaki Ayabe (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
15Robbie Hucker (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
16Benjamin Edmüller (Ger) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
17Bernard Sulzberger (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
18Anuar Manan (Mas) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
19Oddbjørn Klomtsen Andersen (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
20Zachary Bell (Can) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
21Po Hung Wu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
22Adiq Othman (Mas) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
23Yordsuwan Setthawut (Tha) Thailand National Team  
24Lee Rodgers (GBr) CCN Cycling Team  
25Muhammad Fauzan Ahmad Lufti (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
26Mohd Shahrul Mat Amin (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
27David Clarke (GBr) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
28Ohko Shimizu (Jpn) Japan National Team  
29Luke Keough (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
30Yin Chih Wang (Tpe) CCN Cycling Team  
31Thomas Palmer (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling  
32Liam Holohan (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
33Nathan Earle (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
34Masakazu Ito (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
35Kun Hung Hung (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
36Mark Dowling (Irl) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
37Andreas Müller (Aut) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
38Louis Meintjes (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
39Jai Crawford (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
40Dennis Van Niekerk (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
41Chun Kai Feng (Tpe) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
42Andrew Tennant (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
43Hui Zhang (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
44Sirironnachai Sarawut (Tha) Thailand National Team  
45En Huang (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
46Jonathan Clarke (Aus) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
47Max Walsleben (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
48Floris Goesinnen (Ned) DRAPAC Cycling  
49Mohammad Saufi Mat Senan (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
50Patrick Shaw (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
51Yoshimitsu Hiratsuka (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
52Tsgabu Grmay (Eth) MTN Qhubeka  
53Sigurd Nesset (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
54John Kronborg Ebsen (Den) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team  
55Morten Sandvik (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
56Ki Ho Choi (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
57Brennan Townshend (GBr) Madison Genesis Team  
58Dirk Müller (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
59Liphongyu Navuti (Tha) Thailand National Team  
60Boonratanathanakorn Thurakit (Tha) Thailand National Team  
61Mohd Saiful Anwar Azis (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
62Joseph Cooper (NZl) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser  
63Halvor Tandrevold (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi  
64Mart Ojavee (Est) Champion System Pro Cycling Team  
65Yuzuru Suzuki (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
66Chen Lu Qin (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
67Ryan Sherlock (Irl) Polygon Sweet Nice Team  
68Kohei Uchima (Jpn) Japan National Team  
69Johann Van Zyl (RSA) MTN Qhubeka  
70Burr Ho (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
71Christopher Jenninngs (RSA) Team La Pomme Marseille  
72Hsin Hua Huang (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
73Ryoma Nonaka (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
74Benjamin Sydlik (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
75Hayato Yoshida (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
76Petr Lechner (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
77Masahiko Yasui (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team  
78Mohd Nor Umardi Rosdi (Mas) Terengganu Cycling Team  
79Yat Wai Chan (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
80Dominic Jelfs (Irl) Madison Genesis Team0:01:14 
81Bradley White (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling0:02:05 
82Martyn Irvine (Irl) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
83Rick Ampler (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS  
84Yasuharo Nakajima (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team0:02:51 
85Nur Arif Prayoga (Ina) Polygon Sweet Nice Team0:03:40 
86Yue Peng Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team0:05:32 
87Daniel Summerhill (USA) UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling  
88Yi Hao Tseng (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida  
89Mohd Nur Rizuan Zainal (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
90Shimpei Fukuda (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team  
91Che Wei Hu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida0:06:16 
92Shotaro Iribe (Jpn) Shimano Racing Team0:09:19 
93Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) MTN Qhubeka0:09:47 
94Chun Wing Leung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China  
95Ahmad Fahmi Farhan Ahmad Fuat (Mas) Malaysia National Team  
96Takero Terasaki (Jpn) Japan National Team  
97Hiroki Nishimura (Jpn) Japan National Team0:12:52 
Points classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Kirill Pozdnyakov (Rus) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team17 pts
2King Lok Cheung (HKg) Team Hong Kong China14 
3Christoph Scweizer (Ger) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team13 
4Anthony Giacoppo (Aus) Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Adviser12 
5Benjamin Giraud (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille11 
6Takeaki Ayabe (Jpn) Aisan Racing Team10 
7Robbie Hucker (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling9 
8Benjamin Edmüller (Ger) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer8 
9Bernard Sulzberger (Aus) DRAPAC Cycling8 
10Grischa Janorschke (Ger) NUTRIXXION ABUS7 
11Fabian Schnaidt (Ger) Champion System Pro Cycling Team7 
12Anuar Manan (Mas) Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team6 
13Hao Liu (Chn) Max Success Sports Cycling Team5 
14Jakub Kratochvila (Cze) ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer5 
15Oddbjørn Klomtsen Andersen (Nor) Team Frøy-Bianchi4 
16Ian Bibby (GBr) Madison Genesis Team3 
17Sai-Udomsin Phuchong (Tha) Thailand National Team3 
18Gordon Mccauley (NZl) DRAPAC Cycling3 
19Zachary Bell (Can) Champion System Pro Cycling Team3 
20Thomas Vaubourzeix (Fra) Team La Pomme Marseille2 
21Po Hung Wu (Tpe) Team Senter - Merida1 
22Kohei Uchima (Jpn) Japan National Team1 
23Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) MTN Qhubeka1 
Teams classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Synergy Baku Cycling Project Team9:46:28 
2Team Hong Kong China  
3Champion System Pro Cycling Team0:00:08 
4DRAPAC Cycling  
5Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Advisers  
6Thailand National Team  
7Aisan Racing Team  
8ARBÖ-Gebrüder Weiss-Oberndorfer  
9Madison Genesis Team  
10Max Success Sports Cycling Team  
11Team La Pomme Marseille  
12NUTRIXXION ABUS  
13Team Frøy-Bianchi  
14Team Senter - Merida  
15MTN QhubekaMTN  
16Terengganu Cycling Team  
17Shimano Racing Team  
18UnitedHealthCare Pro Cycling0:02:05 
19Polygon Sweet Nice Team0:03:40 
20Japan National Team0:09:47 
21Malaysia National Team0:15:11 
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