SPRINTER Ronald Lomotos surged with a burst of speed in the final kilometer to finish second in Stage 2 of the Tour de Borneo 2013 in Sabah, Malaysia.
The hard-nosed rider from LBC-MVP Sports Foundation Cycling Pilipinas clocked four hours, 43 minutes and 17 seconds over the 189.2-kilometer distance from Tanjung Aru to Papar won by Iranian Mehdi Sohrabi (4:43:13) of Tabriz Petrochemical Team.
Lomotos, an Asian Championship campaigner last year, climbed to third overall, just eight seconds behind overall leader Hossein Nateghi (7:23:48) and four ticks slower than Stage 1 winner Australian Paul Van Der Ploeg of TCO Cycling.
Mountain specialist Mark Galedo of
7-Eleven-Roadbike Philippines slipped from fifth to seventh overall in the 94-rider field, 10 seconds back, after checking in with a large group close behind Sohrabi.
Galedo, the two-time cycling Tour champion and 2012 Ronda Pilipinas winner, however, placed second in the last of three intermediate sprints to gain points in the sprint category.
Ronald Oranza, who also rides for LBC-MVPSF, dropped to eighth overall, 11 seconds behind Nateghi. The third placer of this year’s Ronda Pilipinas started the day in fourth spot.
Junrey Navarra, Rustom Lim and Mark Bonzo of LBC-MVPSF stayed within striking distance, 14 seconds back, in the company of fellow Filipino riders Mark Julius Bordeos, Baler Ravina, Marcelo Felipe and Ryan Boots Cayubit of 7-Eleven-Roadbike Philippines.
Navarra, a climb specialist from Davao, will keep the red jersey, the Tour’s King of the Mountain leader, for another day.
He ruled a Category 4 climb in the 87.5 km stretch in Tenghilan the day before. It was the second and steeper of two KOM ascents in Stage 1.