In the 10th running of the UCI 2.2 Le Tour de Filipinas it was Angus Lyons who once again showed his General Classification ability over a hilly parcours.
The opening stage of the 5 day event, a 130km loop around Tagaytay, proved to be a decisive day for the overall title. A crash in the opening kilometres unfortunately saw Conor Murtagh forced to abandon the race after suffering what was later found to be a broken pelvis. After a fast and furious 115km lap around the Taal Lake the riders then ascended a 12km climb to the finish which saw Lyons ride to second on the stage and second overall.
Having lost Murtagh already, the team was dealt another blow with Brendon Davids forced to stop during Stage 2 due to illness. Down to a three-man team of Lyons, Sebastian Presley, and Jack Sykes for the remaining 3 stages: the squad got to work defending Lyons’ strong overall General Classification position. In their first season of UCI level competition, Presley and Sykes were both outstanding, and presented Lyons with every opportunity to defend his GC position. After the fifth and final stage of the tour, Lyons finished 3rd overall, 1:38 in arrears, demonstrating the depth and selflessness of his teammates.
After a successful UCI Asia Tour campaign, the Oliver’s Real Food Racing Team now shifts its focus back to Australia with the NRS racing set to commence in August with the Tour of the Tropics and the Tour of the Tweed.
Angus Lyons: “It was really hard to lose both Conor and Brendon so early in the race. I was pretty high up on GC and by Stage 3 the other teams could smell blood in the water. I had to lean on Seb and Jack so much during the week. It was quite incredible what the two of them were able to do to help me.”