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Timothy Rugg of Team LowestRates.ca Wins Opening Prologue at Tour du Rwanda – Boivin 4th.

by Ben Andrew
Tim Rugg in yellow jersey  ©  Ben Andrew
November 13, 2016 (Kigali, Rwanda) – Timothy Rugg of the Canadian LowestRates.ca Cycling Team out of Gatineau, QC won the opening prologue of the UCI 2.2 Tour du Rwanda. The American, Rugg, took the win on the 3.3km course with a time of 4:00.00, ahead of Amanuel Gerreigzabhier of Dimension Data for Qhubeka, and Joseph Areruya of Club Les Amis Sportifs De Rwamagana. 2015 Canadian Road Race National Champion Guillaume Boivin (Cycling Academy) finished 4th at four seconds down.

Boivin Cogebanque-Climber's Jersey  ©  Ben Andrew
“I hoped to do a top-10 in the Prologue. To win, this is kind of a surprise.” Rugg. Team LowestRates.ca enjoyed a strong start to the Tour, being one of only two teams to place multiple riders inside the top-10, with Brett Wachendorf finishing 8th. Defending champion Jean Bosco Nsengimana (Stradalli –Bike Aid) finished 5th, also at 4 seconds.

Jean Bosco Nsengimana  ©  Ben Andrew

The Tour du Rwanda is comprised of an opening prologue and seven stages, covering a large part of the small African nation. This year, the event takes place between November 13 and November 20. Known as the ‘Land of a Thousand Hills’, riders will face over 20,500m of climbing over the 820km race, with a large portion at altitude. The race is famed for its massive spectator attendance. The 2015 edition had over 3 million spectators along the route, making the race one of the most heavily viewed events outside of Europe.

rugg-meeting-press  ©  Ben Andrew

“I’ve never seen a crowd like that at a race before. It is exciting to see all the excitement around cycling here in Rwanda. I would have never expected this,” commented Rugg.

Tomorrow’s Stage 1 will see riders facing one category 3 climb as they ride East from the capital of Kigali to the town of Ngoma. The 96.8km stage could offer an opportunity for sprinters, such as Boivin, to shine before the racing heads into the hilly and mountainous stages.

Results (brief)

1. Timothy Rugg (USA) Team Lowestrates.ca 04:00
2. Amanuel Gebreigzabhier (Eri) Dimension Data for Qhubeka) 0:03
3. Joseph Areruya (Rwa) Club Les Amis Sportif de Rwanda
4. Guillaume Boivin (Can) Cycling Academy Team 0:04

32. Cameron McPhaden (Can) Team Lowestrates.ca 0:18
37. Stephen Keeping (Can) Team Lowestrates.ca 0:20


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