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30th Vuelta Independencia – Stages 1 and 2

report by Jean-Michel Lachance/Tour de Quebec Team

February 25, 2009 (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic) – Here is some news from the Tour de Quebec Team at the 30th Vuelta Independencia in the Dominican Republic. We just finished the second stage in Santo Domingo. So far, the team showed good performance. Internet access is very hard to find so please excuse the lack of reports.

The first stage was a flat circuit (125km, 14 laps) Charles Thibault eventually get in a break which gained up to one minute. Only two riders at first – then some riders bridged to them. On the 4th lap, their was a Meta Volante sprint so I attacked and almost bridged to the leaders in the breakaway. I ended up 4th in the sprint with only one point but we continued and the break was joined by more riders. I won the second sprint (5 points) on lap 6 by attacking with 1km to go.

On lap 8, there was another Meta Volante which I approached the same way by attacking. Unfortunately, I got caught at the line. On the following lap, the peloton caught our break and other attacks started. Unfortunately, I missed the decisive break and therefore the last Meta Volante sprint. Three riders on the team were able to make it to the break – Arnaud Papillon, Guillaume Boivin and Joel Dion Poitras. Two riders rode solo to the line and Guillaume came in 8th, followed by Joel in 9th and Arnaud around 12th. That performance placed us as the best team in the overall classification and since the leader of the Meta Volante was also the new leader of the overall, I got to wear the Meta Volante jersey.

Stage 2
The second stage was a back and forth on the highway between Santo Dominguo and Boca Chica. The race started fast and getting away was not easy. Two guys managed to escape and had more than a minute near the first Meta Volante at 38km. I attacked and almost caught them in time for the sprint. Unfortunately, I came 5th with no points. After that, I tried to organize a breakaway, but riders would not collaborate well until a small group with Wendy Cruz, two riders from Costa Rican Pizza Hut and other riders from republic. I won the second sprint.

Our break got caught at Boca Chica. After that I went to the car to get four bottles and unfortunately, a break went off again. Joel, Guillaume and I managed to bridge to the first group, but I was not able to score any points finishing 5th again. Guillaume scored another top 10 today and Joel top 15. The race was won by the yellow jersey, followed by Cruz at 3min behind the first group – an impressive ride.

For more info visit tourdequebec.com

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