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Tour of Singkarak 2012

June 14, 2012
The Antangen Eddy Hollands Bicycle Services Cycling Team consisted of riders, Eddy Hollands, Sam Smith, Peter Griffin, Alex Downie and Chris Glasby with Managers Puspita Muskita and Marta looking after us. We also hade Heksa Prasetya riding for the Colossi/Miche Team.
Stage 1,77km. With the temperature touching 40degrees and a 3km climb straight out of the neutral zone, it made for a very nervous start line. Everyone made it over the climb but Alex suffered a puncture at the bottom of the decent and with the race traveling at 50km/h he never made it back. He unfortunately was 40sec outside the time limit and his tour was over. The rest of us mde it through to the final 4km climb followed by a 3km decent to the finish. The bunch exploded up the final climb with the boys finishing safely and happy to make it threw a very hard and nervous day of racing. Race stats 77km, 1hr 54mins, average speed 41.1km/h with 642m of vertical climbing.

Stage 2, 124km. After a short transfer the stage started with the usual fast pace and attacking style that we have become used to here in Asia. A break of 10 riders formed with Eddy being part of it along with Heksa. The break grew out to nearly 5mins at the bottom of the climb half way through the stage. This was the signal for the Austaliain National Team to begin chasing as they had missed the break. Heksa finished in 2nd place in both of the sprint points, putting him on the podium for the afternoon. The break was caught with 15km to go and the race finished with a bunch sprint on a road no wider than the freeway bike path. Sam, Peter and Eddy finished in th bunch with Glasby coming in the group safely in the time limit. Heksa had a great day finishing in 12th. Race stats, 124km, 3hr 09mins, average speed 40km/h with 1173 of vertical climbing.

Stage 3, 102km. After another very hard start, the race started its first climb of the day after about 10km covered. Sam having a good day got himself over the hill in the front group and made the break on the decent. Sams group was caught 2km from the top of the 2nd big climb of the day just before the last 15km downhill to the finish line. A group of about 40 riders came to the finish line sprinting for 2nd as there was one rider just in front. Heksa had another great day crossing the line in 8th, Eddy finished in the bunch after dragging himself over the climb with the front group. Sam lost some time but no big deal after the day he went through. Peter feeling a bit sick came with in the time limit but Chris was outside the time limit today. So the team is down to 3. Race stats, 102km, 2hr 37mins, average speed 39km/h with 1400m of vertical climbing.

Stage 4, 157km. Today's stage was flat for the first 90km but then the climbing started with climbs featured by the Kelok 44, a 44 turn climb up to 1000m. As per usual the break went away with no one of importance to the general classiment riders. The bunch rolled along the coast until we turned and started going up hill. The three of us made it over the first climb but it wasn't long before we hit the bottom of kelok 44. Everyone just found their own rhythm up the climb. Eddy and Sam climbed together and by the time they got to the finish only lost 6mins finishing just out the top 30 placings. Peter still suffering from sickness got himself to the finish line with plenty of time to spare. Race stats, 157km, 4hr 21mins, average speed 37km/h with 1641m of vertical climbing.

Stage 5, 149km. Today we woke up to cold and wet conditions, not normal for racing in Indonesia. The first 10km of this stage where down hill so as a result it was quite dangerous. Eddy followed some moves and as results found himself in the break and started to build up a good lead before we started the category 1 climb. Along the way eddy tried his luck at the intermediate sprint and finished a nice 2nd. Podium appearance for the team tonight. The yellow jersey group caught Eddy 1km from the top of the mountain, 1km to early as it turned out. Eddy managed to follow the second group all the way to the finish line and finish in 14th place and move up into 19th overall. Sam rode impressively once again to only finish a few minutes to Eddies group . Unfortunately Peter just could not get through the stage due to illness and had to retire from the race. Race stats, 149km, 3hr 57mins, average speed 38km/h with 1600m of vertical climbing.

Stage 6, 146km. With the late afternoon finish and 2hr transfer last night, we had to wake up early and do another 1hr transfer to the start line. The main aim for today was to get into the days breakaway, but with both Eddy and Sam very tired from the last two day this was always going to be difficult. But it didn't stop them trying. But the break got away without either of the guys, so we could only hope that the break would be caught and we could try to counter attack. But this didn't happen either. The break stayed away but only 10sec. Eddy and Sam crossed line together mid field. A good day for the guys to stay sheltered in the bunch and try to fleshing up a bit for tomorrows last stage. Race stats, 146km, 3hr 26mins, average speed 43km/h with 460m of vertical climbing.

Stage 7, 99km. The last stage didn't start until 1pm so it gave everyone a chance relax a bit and sleep in. The first obstacle was a climb after 15km. The climb itself wasn't to bad but the road surface were bricks and very rough. The bunch did a small loop at the top and descended down the same road. Sam punctured at the top of the climb and with the bunch spread over a few minutes, Sam was never to see the bunch again. The stage finished with 6laps of a 5km curcuit with 3laps to go Eddy punctured and spent a full lap chasing back to the bunch. As a result all he could to do is roll in the bunch just inside the top 30.

After a very tough tour of which over 30 starters failed to finish, Eddy finished in 19th overall with Sam In 43rd place overall.

Next up for the team is the one day race in Jakarta. The Tour of Jakarta a 200km circuit race on the streets of the city.