Romas Zubrickas stepped up to the fifth position in Belgium
Klaipėda Cycling Team member Romas Zubrickas, representing Lithuania National team, stepped from 19th up to 5th position in the general classification after the fourth stage of „Sint-Martinusprijs Kontich“ junior (17-18 years) stage race held for 54th time in Belgium. Only four rivals from countries with deep cycling traditions: Germany, Belgium and France are ahead of the Lithuanian Junior champion.
© Tomas Gaubys
There were two stages held on Sunday. In the third stage (11.7 km ITT) R. Zubrickas ranked fourth. He lost 20 seconds to the race winner Loran Cassaert from Belgium (14.43, average speed – 47,701 km/h). Belgian rider Yentl Bekaert (+7 sec.) was second, French Antoine Raugel (+18 sec.) – third.
The fourth stage was won by Xander Geysels from Belgium. He completed the 110 km distance in 2:33.03 (average speed – 43.12 km/h). Riders ranked in between 2nd and 11th position, including R. Zubrickas, who finished seventh, were classified with the same race time. Romas took the third place in the first intermediate mountain finish.
German Kilian Steigner tops General Classification after the fourth stage of the race which is part of the International Cycling Union (UCI) calendar. R. Zubrickas is in fifth position and loses 12 seconds to the race leader. Belgian L. Cassaert (+3 sec.) – second, Janne van Grieken’s (+6 sec.) – third and Frenchman Antoine Raugel (+12 sec.) fourth.
Another representative of Klaipėda team Denas Masiulis (+1.55) takes 53rd place.
In the points classification R. Zubrickas also ranks fifth.
143 cyclists out of 163 originally classified still continue the race. Alanas Marcinkenas quit the race on Saturday. Mantas Januškevičius, Kęstutis Vaitaitis and Aristidas Kelmelis are still representing the Lithuania National Junior team (coach Artūras Šiugždinis).
Race involving cyclists from 12 different countries will end on Monday. The cyclists have to ride 125.1 km during the stage five.
In 2005 German Marcel Kittel, currently one of the best sprinters in the world, finished the same stage race with the silver medal. In 2006, the entire podium was occupied by Lithuanians: Marius Kukta – Gold, Evaldas Šiškevičius – Silver, Gediminas Kaupas – Bronze.