The 150.9-kilometre sixth stage of Le Tour de Langkawi (UCI 2.Pro) came down to the final metres in a shootout on the historic streets of Georgetown District on Pulua-Pinang between Hideto Nakane (Nippo Delko One Provence) and Gleb Brussenskiy (VIno-Astana Motors) on Wednesday.
With a peloton split and an 11-man chase rapidly closing the gap, it was 29-year-old Japanese rider Nakane with the photo finish victory over his Kazakh rival as the chase led by reigning U23 world champion Samuele Battistella (NTT Pro Cycling) barrelled across the line just four seconds later with Stage 1 winner and general classification runner-up Yevgeniy Federov in tow.
Nakane and Brussenskiy broke off from the peloton at the 10-kilometre mark just 15km after the field had absorbed a four-man break consisting of Ben Van Dam (Team Bridgelane), Thurakit Boonratanathanakorn (Thailand), Tour de France stage winner Pierre Rolland (B&B Hotels-Vital Concept p/b KTM) and Jeroen Meijers (SSIOS Miogee), who held the virtual race lead when the gap was 3 minutes 25 seconds in front of the yellow jersey group.
Race leader Danilo Celano (Team Sapura Cycling) conceded four seconds to Federov after finishing eight seconds back, but still holds a decisive 26-second advantage over the Kazakh with only two sprint stages remaining in the eight-stage UCI Asia Tour road race.
The 19-year-old Federov still holds the white jersey as best Asian rider, meanwhile Russian Artem Ovechkin (Terengganu Inc. TSG Cycling) remains third on general classification 35 seconds adrift of the yellow jersey.
Nakane trails Federov for the white jersey (+1:08) and is sixth on GC (+1:34).
Stage 3 winner and current points leader Max Walscheid (NTT Pro Cycling) picked up another point during the second intermediate sprint to extend his lead over surging Australian Taj Jones (ARA Pro Cycling Sunshine Coast) by 11 points and Harrif Saleh (Terengganu Inc. TSG Cycling) by 20.
asia.eurosport.com, 12 February 2020