How many bicycles did Katie Melua say there were in Beijing? However many it was, this week has seen a few more with the staging of the brand-new Tour of Beijing, a five day event that started on Wednesday with an 11.3km ITT stage and will conclude on Sunday with a run from Tiananmen Square to the iconic Bird’s Nest Olympic Stadium. Today’s stage (Friday, October 7), at 162k, was considered by far the toughest, but it also proved itself ideal for those keen to break free of the peleton and with 15km left to go that’s exactly what happened. Ultimately it was Ag2r -La Mondiale’s Nicolas Roche who took the stage win, whilst Tony Martin (of HTC-Highroad) retained his overall lead and now stands a good chance of a Tour win.
Saxo Bank-SunGard’s Nick Nuyens, who finished second in the sprint among the chasers and finished fifth today (and 19th overall) commented “It’s a new and exciting experience to race in China. The roads are wide and good and the organization of the event is rather good considering the fact that the race is new”