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Bakke bests break in Kibuye

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Every day has seen the crowds flock to the Tour of Rwanda.

Every day has seen the crowds flock to the Tour of Rwanda. (Image credit: Cynthia Lou)
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Rolling terrain whittled down the bunch on stage 6.

Rolling terrain whittled down the bunch on stage 6. (Image credit: Cynthia Lou)
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Stage 6 was marked by some aggressive riding.

Stage 6 was marked by some aggressive riding. (Image credit: Cynthia Lou)
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Adrien Niyonshuti lost the overall lead on stage 6.

Adrien Niyonshuti lost the overall lead on stage 6. (Image credit: Cynthia Lou)

The post-rest day stage of the Tour of Rwanda was fatal to Adrien Niyonshuti, leader of the general classification at his home race and one of the most popular athletes in his country. On Monday he fell to second overall behind Eritrean Tesfai Teklit while South African Jason Bakke won the sprint from the breakaway group in Kibuye.

Stage 6 was enthralling, covering 125.8km and seven climbs, which compensated for the frustration caused by the previous stage, where a “wait and see” policy had been the order of the day. After only 6km, Daniel Teklehaimanot, leader of the Eritrean team, tried to attack with French baroudeur Benjamin Trouche (CA Castelsarrasin) and then did so again just 7km later.

After the first ascent, a large breakaway developed and contained around fifeteen riders. All the favourites were in front: yellow jersey Adrien Niyonshuti (Rwanda), Reinardt and Jacques Janse Van Rensburg, Jason Bakke (South Africa), Ethiopians Tsgabu Grmay and Estifanos Gebresilassie (UCI Continental Center), Adil Jelloul (Morocco), Issiaka Fofana (Ivory Coast), Julien Schick (CA Castelsarrasin) and the whole Eritrean national team, which immediately highlighted itself as the big threat to the overall lead.

Niyonshuti was only supported for part of the race by his team-mate Nathan Byukunsenge, a former professional with South African team MTN. Forced to control each attack, he defended his jersey bravely in an heroic but unsuccessful struggle. His coach Jock Boyer was very disappointed after the stage: “I'm surprised that the guys in front rode against Adrien. There were Eritrean and South African riders. That was worthy for them to work together with him but they didn't do it.”

At the 40km mark, four riders went off the front of the breakaway: Teklit and Debesai (Eritrea), Bakke and Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (South Africa). Their gap grew to 3:10 after 70km and Niyonshuti did his well to reduce it to 57 seconds by the finish line, but that was still unfortunately 45 too many to keep his yellow jersey. He also lost time on two other rivals, Teklehaimanot and Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg, who counterattacked in the closing kilometres.

In the leading group, the Eritrean riders were defeated by Jason Bakke, who won the sprint after his teammate had attacked on the last descent. The stage win was the 19-year-old talent’s most prestigious success to date. At the end of September, he broke the record in the time trial of the Clover Nelspruit 4 Day Tour, in South Africa, knocking 45 seconds off the previous best time up the 7.3km climb. He signed for Team Medscheme, a candidate for a Continental licence.

Bakke's victory in Kibuye sealed his comeback from a serious crash last February, when his bike collided with a car. “I almost died,” he said. “I only could start riding in May. Since my accident I train more properly, I'm more focused on being stronger.” His win was South Africa’s second success after Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg’s victory on the first day.

Teklit, the new leader of the race, had already worn the yellow jersey after Stage 3. His management underlined that he took it again simply because he was the best placed Eritrean rider overall, but that the team doesn't have a single designated leader. Three other Eritrean riders are in the Top 7: Natnael is third at 0:55, Teklehaimanot fourth at 1:50 and Russom seventh at 2:32.

Full Results
1Jasson Bakke (RSA) South Africa3:23:31
2Frekalsi Debesai (Eri) Eritrea
3Tesfai Teklit (Eri) Eritrea0:00:04
4Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) South Africa0:00:30
5Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Eritrea0:00:50
6Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) South Africa
7Araya Medhin Dawit Haile (Eri) Eritrea0:00:57
8Teweldemedhin Natnael Berhane (Eri) Eritrea
9Adil Jelloul (Mar) Morocco
10Meron Russom (Eri) Eritrea
11Adrien Niyonshuti (Rwa) Rwanda
12Tsgabu Gebremaryam Grmay (Eth) UCI Continental Center
13Estifanos Gebresilassie (Eth) UCI Continental Center0:01:14
14Abdelati Saadoune (Mar) Morocco0:05:59
15Sollomon Bittew Shiferaw (Eth) UCI Continental Center
16Issiaka Fofana (CIv) Ivory Coast
17Julien Schick (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin0:06:07
18Nathan Byukusenge (Rwa) Rwanda0:06:12
19Issiaka Cisse (CIv) Ivory Coast0:10:24
20Paul Agorir (Ken) Kenya0:15:02
21Samuel Ekiru (Ken) Kenya0:15:08
22Gasore Hategeka (Rwa) Rwanda
23Kipchumba Benjamin Kogo (Ken) Kenya0:15:19
24Mouhssine Lahsaini (Mar) Morocco0:16:14
25Emmanuel Rudahunga (Rwa) Rwanda0:16:28
26Nyandwi Uwase (Rwa) Rwanda
27Jean De Dieu Uwimana (Rwa) Rwanda
28Obed Ruvogera (Rwa) Rwanda0:16:36
29David Matovu (Uga) Mixt Team Grands Lacs0:17:05
30Peter Loriko (Ken) Kenya
31Innocent Sibomana (Rwa) Rwanda
32Samuel Mwangi (Ken) Kenya
33Evert Verbist (Bel) Flanders Avia Team0:21:05
34Fathi Ahmed Atunsi (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
35Philip Van Baele (Bel) Flanders Avia Team
36Gabriel Combrinck (RSA) South Africa
37Guy Smet (Bel) Flanders Avia Team
38Adnane Aarbia (Mar) Morocco
39Bram Delie (Bel) Flanders Avia Team
40Obert Chembe (Zam) UCI Continental Center
41Amr Mahmoud Ahmed Mohamed (Egy) Egypt0:21:15
42Javier Megias-Leal (Spa) Team Type 10:21:19
43Tarik Chaoufi (Mar) Morocco0:25:05
44Youssef Belgasem Ahmed (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
45Mohamed Ali Almabruk (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
46Med Said El Ammoury (Mar) Morocco
47Chris Germain (Sey) Seychelles
48Simeon Green (GBr) C.A. Castelsarrasin
49Guillaume Soula (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin
50Joeri Calleeuw (Bel) Flanders Avia Team
51Raoul Herve Mbah (Cmr) Cameroon0:32:34
52Mahmoud Mohamed Alaa Eddin (Egy) Egypt0:32:49
53Eddin Asran Osamahussam (Egy) Egypt
54Innocent Uwamungu (Rwa) Rwanda0:35:42
55Issa Ntibitura (Rwa) Rwanda0:35:57
56Benjamin Trouche (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin
57Sah Noel Tanessop (Cmr) Cameroon0:39:04
58Eric Sinamenye (Rwa) Rwanda0:39:44
59Robert Tawedi Modi (Cmr) Cameroon0:39:57
60Alex Bowden (USA) Team Type 10:42:44
61Fabio Calabria (Aus) Team Type 1
62Stradford James Helms (USA) Team Type 1
63Amin Abdelrazag Alkilani (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
64Ali Al-Sayed Ali Abdullah (Egy) Egypt
65Faysal Alsharaa (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
66Ahmed Mohamed Abdalla (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
HDJohn Delong (USA) C.A. Castelsarrasin0:49:20
HDTrust Munangandu (Zam) UCI Continental Center0:53:30
DNSDan Craven (Nam) UCI Continental Center
DNFLuthando Kaka (RSA) South Africa
DNFIbrahim James Yousef (Egy) Egypt
DNFMohamed Saad Abou Hegazy (Egy) Egypt

General classification after stage 6
1Tesfai Teklit (Eri) Eritrea18:23:03
2Adrien Niyonshuti (Rwa) Rwanda0:00:45
3Teweldemedhin Natnael Berhane (Eri) Eritrea0:01:05
4Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) Eritrea0:01:50
5Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) South Africa0:02:03
6Adil Jelloul (Mar) Morocco0:02:29
7Meron Russom (Eri) Eritrea0:02:32
8Tsgabu Gebremaryam Grmay (Eth) UCI Continental Center0:02:50
9Frekalsi Debesai (Eri) Eritrea0:03:58
10Estifanos Gebresilassie (Eth) UCI Continental Center0:05:49
11Abdelati Saadoune (Mar) Morocco0:09:24
12Julien Schick (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin0:10:11
13Jacques Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) South Africa0:13:00
14Nathan Byukusenge (Rwa) Rwanda0:16:40
15Sollomon Bittew Shiferaw (Eth) UCI Continental Center0:18:32
16Jasson Bakke (RSA) South Africa0:19:48
17Paul Agorir (Ken) Kenya0:22:00
18Araya Medhin Dawit Haile (Eri) Eritrea0:22:20
19Gabriel Combrinck (RSA) South Africa0:32:07
20Issiaka Fofana (CIv) Ivory Coast0:34:32
21Gasore Hategeka (Rwa) Rwanda0:38:24
22Nyandwi Uwase (Rwa) Rwanda0:40:38
23Fathi Ahmed Atunsi (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya0:42:06
24Emmanuel Rudahunga (Rwa) Rwanda0:42:22
25Issiaka Cisse (CIv) Ivory Coast0:43:41
26Tarik Chaoufi (Mar) Morocco0:48:19
27Mouhssine Lahsaini (Mar) Morocco0:49:52
28Obed Ruvogera (Rwa) Rwanda0:51:36
29Amr Mahmoud Ahmed Mohamed (Egy) Egypt0:53:27
30Jean De Dieu Uwimana (Rwa) Rwanda0:55:42
31Javier Megias-Leal (Spa) Team Type 10:58:46
32Med Said El Ammoury (Mar) Morocco1:00:22
33Evert Verbist (Bel) Flanders Avia Team1:01:10
34Bram Delie (Bel) Flanders Avia Team1:01:35
35Eddin Asran Osamahussam (Egy) Egypt1:03:04
36Samuel Mwangi (Ken) Kenya1:03:17
37Adnane Aarbia (Mar) Morocco1:03:48
38Kipchumba Benjamin Kogo (Ken) Kenya1:07:22
39Peter Loriko (Ken) Kenya1:10:21
40Benjamin Trouche (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin1:12:51
41Philip Van Baele (Bel) Flanders Avia Team1:13:02
42Guillaume Soula (Fra) C.A. Castelsarrasin1:13:18
43David Matovu (Uga) Mixt Team Grands Lacs1:14:11
44Joeri Calleeuw (Bel) Flanders Avia Team1:19:39
45Obert Chembe (Zam) UCI Continental Center1:19:46
46Mohamed Ali Almabruk (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya1:22:48
47Guy Smet (Bel) Flanders Avia Team1:25:06
48Samuel Ekiru (Ken) Kenya1:28:25
49Youssef Belgasem Ahmed (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya1:30:28
50Chris Germain (Sey) Seychelles1:30:50
51Innocent Sibomana (Rwa) Rwanda1:37:17
52Ahmed Mohamed Abdalla (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya1:38:48
53Innocent Uwamungu (Rwa) Rwanda1:40:47
54Ali Al-Sayed Ali Abdullah (Egy) Egypt1:49:06
55Raoul Herve Mbah (Cmr) Cameroon1:49:43
56Faysal Alsharaa (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya2:02:40
57Mahmoud Mohamed Alaa Eddin (Egy) Egypt2:08:26
58Sah Noel Tanessop (Cmr) Cameroon2:08:37
59Issa Ntibitura (Rwa) Rwanda2:09:30
60Robert Tawedi Modi (Cmr) Cameroon2:10:30
61Simeon Green (GBr) C.A. Castelsarrasin2:15:28
62Fabio Calabria (Aus) Team Type 12:29:04
63Amin Abdelrazag Alkilani (Lba) Libyan Arab Jamahiriya2:30:35
64Alex Bowden (USA) Team Type 12:34:37
65Eric Sinamenye (Rwa) Rwanda2:42:08
66Stradford James Helms (USA) Team Type 12:47:46


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