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Tour de Langkawi: Number 15 ready to go

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Le Tour de Langkawi 2010 director Dato' Mohd Yasin Mohd Saleh (left) presents a bicycle to Tuan Guru Dato' H Nik Abdul Azis

Le Tour de Langkawi 2010 director Dato' Mohd Yasin Mohd Saleh (left) presents a bicycle to Tuan Guru Dato' H Nik Abdul Azis (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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Scenes from the presentation of the 2010 Tour de Langkawi presentation in Malaysia

Scenes from the presentation of the 2010 Tour de Langkawi presentation in Malaysia (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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Venezuelan Jose Rujano of the ISD-Neri outfit is the pre-race favourite and will be the rider to watch on stage six to the top of Genting Highlands.

Venezuelan Jose Rujano of the ISD-Neri outfit is the pre-race favourite and will be the rider to watch on stage six to the top of Genting Highlands. (Image credit: Shane Goss)
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ProTour team Footon-Servetto are presented

ProTour team Footon-Servetto are presented (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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An artistic demonstration at the presentation

An artistic demonstration at the presentation (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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The organising committee of the 2010 Tour de Langkawi

The organising committee of the 2010 Tour de Langkawi (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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Rene Haselbhacher (right, Vorarlberg-Corratec), Anuar Manan (Geumsan Ginseng Asia Team) and Jose Rujano Guillen (ISD-Neri) at the press conference

Rene Haselbhacher (right, Vorarlberg-Corratec), Anuar Manan (Geumsan Ginseng Asia Team) and Jose Rujano Guillen (ISD-Neri) at the press conference (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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The Malaysian team will race their national tour this week

The Malaysian team will race their national tour this week (Image credit: R Pudyanto)
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Australian Continental team Drapac Porsche will be looking to make an impact on the tour this year. In the 2008 edition, Mitchell Docker, held the tour leader's yellow jersey with one stage remaining until Moldovian Ruslan Ivanov took over the mantle.

Australian Continental team Drapac Porsche will be looking to make an impact on the tour this year. In the 2008 edition, Mitchell Docker, held the tour leader's yellow jersey with one stage remaining until Moldovian Ruslan Ivanov took over the mantle. (Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Reigning Austrian road race national champion Markus Eibegger of the fancied Footon-Servetto-Fuji team.

Reigning Austrian road race national champion Markus Eibegger of the fancied Footon-Servetto-Fuji team. (Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Veteran rider Rene Haselbacher from Austria is Vorarlberg-Corratec's main man on the tour after spending seasons with Gerolsteiner and Astana.

Veteran rider Rene Haselbacher from Austria is Vorarlberg-Corratec's main man on the tour after spending seasons with Gerolsteiner and Astana. (Image credit: Shane Goss)
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Irishman David McCann is back again for another crack at the tour with the Giant Asia Racing Team who were overall team champions of the tour in 2007.

Irishman David McCann is back again for another crack at the tour with the Giant Asia Racing Team who were overall team champions of the tour in 2007. (Image credit: Shane Goss)
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South African Ian McLeod is an experienced campaigner and a familiar face here in Malaysia. The South African National team holds the record for the best performing national team in the tour's history.

South African Ian McLeod is an experienced campaigner and a familiar face here in Malaysia. The South African National team holds the record for the best performing national team in the tour's history. (Image credit: Shane Goss)

ISD-Neri rider José Rujano remains the favourite for 15th edition of the Tour de Langkawi, as the 20 teams competing were presented this afternoon in Kota Bharu ahead of the opening stage on Monday.

The likes of Footon-Servetto, Italian Professional Continental squad ISD-Neri, Vorarlberg-Corratec and Australian outfit Drapac-Porsche were presented by Kelantan Mentri Besar (Regional Chief Minister for Kelantan) Nik Aziz.

The withdrawal of Footon-Servetto's Manuel Cardoso following his crash in the Volta ao Algarve was a blow for race organisers, with Rujano (pictured right) the undisputed favourite for the crown.

"I hope my team can work together to get me in the right position for the Genting climb," explained Rujano, who also said he likes the reputed ascent, having secured a third-placed finish on the mountain during the 2007 edition of the race.

It's been well-publicised that this year's race lacks the big teams and riders of previous editions but the runner up of the 2005 event admitted that he'll still have a tough battle on his hands to better his previous best result.

The Venezuelan shot to prominence during the 2005 Tour de Langkawi as the late South African rider Ryan Cox took the title by a meagre 18 seconds. While Rujano is expected to take overall honours by a larger margin this year, he's remaining focused on the task at hand.

"I've taken second before [in 2005] and I want to win it," stated the dimniuitive climber.

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