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Tour du Rwanda. Stage 5. Astana defends Kudus lead for another day

A strong team’s work of all Astana Pro Team riders helped Merhawi Kudus to extend his lead in the general classification of the Tour du Rwanda for another day. The breakaway saw the finish line at today’s stage 5 (Karongi – Musanze, 138.7 km) as the Eritrean rider Biniyam Ghirmay took the win in a sprint from a small group of escapers. Merhawi Kudus surrounded by teammates finished safely in the main group.

- It was another difficult stage in the mountains. Today almost the whole stage was at 1700 – 2200 meters above sea level. At the start of the stage we had a small crash of our leader Merhawi Kudus, but there was not anything serious. We just did our best to bring him back in the group. In that moment a breakaway went away, so we immediately started to control the race. We were not really interested in chasing hard the break since there were the riders, who are far in the general classification. So, our main goal was to keep Kudus in front of the peloton and to control the situation. This plan worked out perfectly and we will lead this race for another day, - explained Nikita Stalnov.

Once again, there were not any changes in the general classification of the Tour du Rwanda: Merhawi Kudus keeps the lead with the same advantage of 17 seconds over Rein Taaramae and 45 seconds over Matteo Badilatti.

Stage 6 of the race will be held tomorrow: 120.5 km from Musanze to Nyamata.

Photo credit: ©Tour du Rwanda

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