Malaysian home favourites Terengganu Cycling Team (TSG) were in fine form in the opening stage of Jelajah Malaysia which started from Shah Alam, Selangor and ended in Hutan Melintang in Perak.
TSG’s Nur Amirul Fakhruddin Mazuki won the 161.9km race of the 53rd edition of the oldest race in Malaysia in a time of three hours, 52 minutes and 46 seconds but was unfortunately given a 20 second penalty and CHF50 fine for sheltering behind his team car after a change of tires due to puncture.
Amirul remained as the stage winner, but Indonesian Abdul Gani (KFC Cycling Team)
who finished second in the stage was awarded the yellow jersey. Australian youngster Ryan Thomas (Oliver’s Real Food Racing) came in third.
Amirul said he was disappointed but accepted the decision.
“It was a tough race with many breakways but we did well to win it in the end. Unfortunately I suffered a puncture and paced (sheltered) behind our team car until I reached the convoy.”
“I did not know it was against the rules as this (penalty) has never happened to me before. I accept the decision and will focus on our remaining stages.” continued Amirul.
Amirul leads the sprinters competition (green jersey) while Zawawi Azman (Team Sapura Cycling) and Thomas lead the best Malaysian and best young rider categories respectively. In addition to the yellow jersey, Abdul is also leading in the king of the mountains competition (polka dot jersey).
TSG coach Jeremy Hunt echoed Amirul’s sentiments and is expecting his charges to excel in
the second stage today from Lumut to Kuala Kurau (145.30km) where Harrif Saleh will be
expected to deliver the goods.
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