LANGKAWI, October 18 - The 26th edition of the PETRONAS Le Tour de Langkawi 2022 came to an end with Alex Molenaar of Burgos-BH taking the final stage in a rain-soaked race which saw Colombian Ivan Sosa confirming his status as overall winner.
The 23-year-old Molenaar added his third career win as a pro after winning a duel against Alpecin-Deucininck’s Jason Osborne, after a successful early breakaway with three other riders to complete the Stage 8 115.9km Kuah Loop race in 2 hrs 25 minutes 37 seconds.
Molenaar, who became the Netherlands’ sixth stage winner in the history of LTdL, was in a six-men breakaway group early in the race and showed strong contention to remain until the later part of the race.
Colombian Ivan Sosa had a good day, riding safely and was well protected by his team to finally confirm his status as the overall winner of the 26th edition of the race, his third major feat since 2019.
Despite multiple attacks from the peloton, Muhammad Nur AimanZariff defended his position as leader in the mountains classification, finally winning the Proton red jersey for the second time since 2020.
Erlend Blikra of Uno-X won the green jersey ad sprint king while Terengganu Polygon Racing
Team’s Jambaljamts Sainbayar proved his mettle after winning the overall Asian white jersey as Best Asian rider.
“It didn't cross my mind that I will win a stage here. I didn’t expect the win but I’m truly happy with the outcome. It’s good for my reputation as I’m also looking for a new contract for next season…so this win might help a lot,” said Molenaar.
Yellow jersey winner Sosa was relieved, saying that ending the season with a Pro race victory was indeed meaningful.
“It was a fast race and the breakaway group were riding strongly. It was difficult for us to catch up, but in the end, it was all good and I’m very happy with the outcome.
“The win is very important as it helps boost my confidence and would help to boost my racing career,” said Sosa, who was unshakeable in yellow which he held since Stage 3 in Genting Highlands and has now won three titles in the last three years which include the Tour de Provence in 2021, last year’s Vuelta a Asturias and the Petronas Le Tour de Langkawi 2022.
Muhammad Nur Aiman’s feat as King of Mountains made up for the TSG’s disappointment following the disqualification of its top rider Hariff Saleh.
“I’m truly grateful for this win. Winning the red jersey for the second time meant so so much to me as the challenge this year is far more competitive than in 2020 due to the presence of so many good riders and top teams.
However, the 2020 experience has taught me a lot, to be calmer and remained focussed today and ride safely to the end,” said Muhammad Nur Aiman.
Sainbayar kept his slim one-second lead till the end to take the Best Asian Rider title, winning over closest rival Andrey Zeits of Astana Qazaqatan to help TSG emerge as the Best Asian Team.
Movistar lived up to their top billings to take the Best Overall Team title, ahead of closest rival EF Education-EasyPost with a 4 minutes 9 seconds advantage followed by Uno-X Pro Cycling Team in third.
ABOUT LE TOUR de LANGKAWI
Le Tour de Langkawi is a stage race held in Malaysia mooted by former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir, to put Malaysia on the world sporting and tourism map.
Held since 1996, the race usually begins in Langkawi and includes major landmarks such as Genting Highlands and Dataran Merdeka. The race is sanctioned by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) as part of the UCI Asia Tour calendar and is the biggest cycle race in Asia.
Because of the reputation it holds, the race regularly attracts top teams from the World Tour as well as other pro continental, continental and national teams from Europe and Asia.
Established in 1974, Petroliam Nasional Berhad (“PETRONAS”) is Malaysia’s fully integrated oil and gas multinational ranked among the largest corporations on FORTUNE Global 500®.
As the custodian for Malaysia’s national oil and gas resources, we explore, produce and deliver energy to meet society’s growing needs. The growing demand for energy inspires and strengthens our purpose to steadily drive for new solutions and push boundaries towards a sustainable energy future.
For further information, please visit www.petronas.com
ABOUT HUMAN VOYAGE
Human Voyage (M) Sdn. Bhd is a sports event company that specialises in cycling events. The company has successfully organised the UCI MTB race in Langkawi (Langkawi International Mountain Bike Challenge) and has attracted many international top riders and repeat participants.
Previously, Human Voyage has also been entrusted with the responsibility of organising the 20th edition of LTdL in 2015 apart from 2019, 2020 and 2022 editions.