Team Sapura Cycling’s Mario Vogt crosses the finish line in Daet, Camarines Norte dur- ing Stage 2 of Le Tour de Filipinas 2019.
Ernie Pen?aredondo
Jeroen Meijers keeps purple jersey; Mario Vogt rules stage
Joey Villar (The Philippine Star) - June 16, 2019 - 12:00am

DAET, Camarines Norte, Philippines — The Netherland’s Jeroen Meijers engaged Singapore’s Goh Chun Huat in a tug-of-war for the purple jersey in yesterday’s Stage 2 of the 10th Le Tour de Filipinas.

Meijers, of Taiyuan Miogee Cyling Team of China, prevailed in the end.

Germany’s Mario Vogt, racing for Team Sapura Cycling of Malaysia, ruled the stage, which unfolded in Pagbilao, Quezon and concluded before a big crowd at Vinzon’s Avenue here yesterday.

Goh, representing Terengganu Inc. TSG Cycling Team of Malaysia, spearheaded the early, four-man breakaway group that included Vogt, stage runner-up Kohei Uchima of Team Ukyo of Japan and Samuel Hill of Team Nero Bianchi of Australia after the grueling Atimonan climb.

They kept a torrid pace. At one point, Goh had already stolen the lead from Meijers, who ruled the 129.5km Stage 1 in Tagaytay City, before the latter increased the tempo in the final 40 kms and regained the general classification lead with an aggregate time of 7:59:00.

Goh, who ended up third in the stage with a clocking of 4:49:11,  slashed Meijers’ overall lead to just 45 seconds from 1:39 minutes with his overall time of 7:59:45.

Vogt won the stage after he outraced Uchima in a frantic finish with the two winding up with identical times of 4:49:06.

Meijers will continue to wear the lead jersey in today’s 183.7 km Stage 3 with the participants being flagged off in front of the Daet Market in Basabas Beach and the finish set at Rizal Avenue in Legazpi City, Albay.

But the Dutch will have to be a little wary of Goh, who was the leader approaching the final stage in Baguio City four years ago before losing to eventual champion Mark Galedo.

“We have to be more careful this time,” said Meijers.

For Vogt, he was just happy to get his second stage victory of the year and third in his career.

“I’m just happy to win the stage,” he said.

The emergence of Goh pushed Aussie Angus Lyons of Oliver’s Real Food Racing of Australia from second after Stage 1 to third in 7:59:45 while Eritrean Daniel Habtemichael of 7Eleven Cliqq-Air21 by Roadbike Philippines to fourth in 8:01:13.

Habtemichael didn’t fall without reason as he helped teammate Marcelo Felipe, who had a flat tire in the final 40 kms, and had to wait for the team car to get a new tire to finish.

Felipe slipped from No. 10 to 11 in 8:01:36 but could have suffered a worse fate without Habtemichael’s help.

PGN Road Cycling Team of Indonesia’s Sandy Nur Hasan (8:01:25) and Aiman Cahyadi (8:01:32), Team Ukyo of Japan’s Kohei Yokotsuka (8:01:32) and Naoya Yoshioka (8:01:34), Team Sapura’s Mushin Misbah (8:01:35) and Taiyuan’s Li Shua (8:01:36) rounded up the top 10.

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