Guardini extends Tour de Langkawi lead
Italy's Andrea Guardini extended his overall lead at the Tour de Langkawi, claiming a second consecutive sprint win in Malaysia.
The 21-year-old of the Farnese Vini-Neri team finished the 145-kilometre second stage between Kangar and Butterworth in five hours and 29.33 seconds, edging Tabriz Petrochemical's Boris Shpilevsky into second place and Terengganu ProAsia's Anuar Manan into third.
Australia's Deon Locke made the early breakaway for Team Champion Systems, and was swiftly joined by Suren Cycling team's Iranian rider Hamid Shirisisan before building a six-minute lead.
However, with 25km remaining the pair inevitably flagged and were reeled in by the Farnese Vini-Neri-led peloton which set up a hectic 20-odd kilometres of posturing and jostling for position.
Several teams were derailed in the final kilometre as a crash wiped out half a dozen riders but Guardini emerged unscathed, allowing his Farnese Vini-Neri team-mates to deliver him to the line 300 metres out for an emphatic victory.
"I’m very happy to win again to show that yesterday’s win wasn’t a coincidence,” Guardini said.
“It was always going to be difficult today as I had to defend yesterday’s win and to make it two out of two but is something I’m very happy about.”
"Today’s win was harder than yesterday as there were so many crashes in the last kilometre. It was very hard to avoid the crashes and to cross the line first is a good feeling. I will try to win again tomorrow.”
The 10-day race finishes in Kuala Lumpur on February 1.
Stage two results
1. Andrea Guardini (ITA) Farnese Vini-Neri 3:26:26
2. Boris Shpilevsky (RUS) Tabriz Petrochemical Cycling Team
3. Anuar Manan (MAS) Terengganu ProAsia Cycling
4. Vidal Celis Zabala (ESP) Letua Cycling Team
5. Marcel Kittel (GER) Skil - Shimano
6. Davy Commeyne (BEL) Landbouwkrediet
7. Christoff Van Heerden (RSA) MTN Energade
8. Kenny Van Hummel (NED) Skil - Shimano
9. Raymond Kreder (NED) Chipotle Development Team
10. Hilton Clarke (AUS) Unitedhealthcare Maxxis