Navy keeps eye on Army’s Joven
PILI, CAMARINES SUR—If there’s a threat to the leadership, it will show up in Thursday’s seventh stage of LBC Ronda Pilipinas.
That’s the assessment of Philippine Navy-Standard Insurance coach Reinhard Gorantes as the leading team takes on the 227-kilometer leg from here to Daet, Camarines Norte, passing inland into Quezon province.
“At this point, there is no safe lead yet,” said Gorantes in Filipino. “We may lose the top four spots, but definitely we will help defend the red jersey.”
On the crosshairs of the Navy riders—who occupy the top four in the overall individual standings—is No. 5 guy Cris Joven of Kinetix Lab-Army.
Joven will try to slice minutes off overall individual leader Rudy Roque, who is only three minutes and 20 seconds ahead of him. “It’s all about strategy, and hopefully it’s going to be a smooth stage and no accidents,” said Joven.
Even Navy skipper Lloyd Lucien Reynante acknowledged that Joven will be the thorn on their side, being the most capable to sneak into the top three because of his skills and team support.
The eighth stage will be a 183-km lap covering Daet to Unisan, Quezon.
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