Frenchman Valentin Ferron, 23, won stage four of the ongoing Tour du Rwanda on Wednesday.
Ferron’s historic victory means that it is the first-ever stage victory for team Total Direct Energie in Tour du Rwanda, Africa’s biggest race.
Stage four saw cyclists cover 123KM from Kimironko, in the city of Kigali to Musanze.
It took Ferron 3 hours, 13’47” to beat his closest rival, the seasoned Rolland Pierre from B&B Hotels pb KTM who came second in a sprint photo finish.
Ferron and 8 other riders launched a breakaway from 38KM towards Kanyinya Summit and never looked back, apart from Uhiriwe Byiza Renuse who was dropped at the 40Km mark.
The 8 men continued to exchange leading roles in the attack until the last 5Km when Rolland and Ferron left the group behind going into the last 1Km.
Ferron used his sprinting strength to beat Rolland to the finish line and claim the victory on Stage four in Musanze town, Rwanda’s tourism hub.
“Sprint is my strong point. I knew I had a good chance of success. I’m winning a stage of the Tour du Rwanda, it is a great joy, ” Ferron said after the victory.
Eric Manizabayo from Rwanda’s Team.
Benediction Engnite finished 3rd, 4 seconds behind the two leaders, while Jean Bosco Nsengimana came in 7th place.
Colombia’s Sanchez Brayan Stiven who rides for Team Medellin finished 8th but retained the yellow jersey.
On Thursday, riders will take on Stage 5 from Nyagatare to Kigali, covering a total distance of 149KM.
1. SANCHEZ VERGARA Brayan Stiven (TEAM MEDELLIN) 13h 20’ 18”
2. HOEHN Alex WILDLIFE (GENERATION PRO) 13h 20’ 18”
3.PACHER Quentin (B&B HOTELS) 13h 20’ 18”
4. RESTREPO VALENCIA Jhonatan (ANDRONI GIOCATTOLI) 13h 20’ 18”
5. PICCOLI James (ISRAEL START-UP NATION) 13h 20’ 18”
1. Lennert Teugels 35pts
2. Manizabayo Eric 26pts
3. Quintero Carlos 19pts
1. Lennert Teugels 22pts
2. Goytom Tomas 8pts
3. Bernardo Suaza 6pts
Best Young Classification
1. Zerai Nahom 13h20’24"
2. Alan Boileau +27"
3. Eric Frisk Bergström +1’04"
Best African Classification
1. Eyob Metkel 13h20’18"
2. Zerai Nahom +06"
3. Kent Main +58"
1. B&B Hotels pb KTM 40h00’09"
2. Total Direct Energie +01’48"
3. Team Medellin +02’13"