Aucklander Brendon Madden-Smith was crowned champion of the Ford Tour of Samoa on Saturday.
He is the overall winner under combined general classification for the tour. In the women’s race Rebecca Marley was crowned women’s champion for the third time. She finished 16th overall.
Rebecca is the only person so far to win the Tour three times.
The two champions led the Ford Victory Peloton into town on Saturday afternoon after six days of hard riding and racing around Upolu and Savaii.
The victories are well earned and deserved.
Brendon’s triumph was put together around a sound game plan. He held on to his 1 second lead on day one and never surrendered. Another 1min 47secs was added on the third day Time Trial and the rest, they say, was history.
Neil Blayney who was sitting in second spot after Day 3 sustained a puncture on the 100km Challenge on Day 4. That was the end of his challenge for the lead. That left Mike Sanders (Auckland) in second place and Wally Collins of Samoa in third place in the end.
It means Samoa has its second podium finish on the Tour, the first since Elia Lasa in 2014.
Brendon’s podium finish was also fairly well protected by his mates up front and the fact the chasers had nothing left to give.
Collins of Samoa produced an amazing performance. He has come far and long since his first entry into the Tour.
That was only last year. He has a lot to learn in the art of racing and conserving energy. When he masters that, the yellow jersey will be his one day.
Tour GC finish
1 Brendon Madden-Smith 09:33:17
2 Mike Sanders 09:41:09 (-7:52)
3 Wally Collins 09:41:58 (-8:41)
1 Rebecca Marley 10:27:04 (-53:47) - 16th o/a
2 Katheren Leitner 10:29:13 (-55:56) - 17th o/a
3 Anna Dungey 11:40:48 (-2:07:31) - 23rd o/a
King of the Mountain
Alex Chapman (Auckland)
Queen of the Hills
Samoans on Tour
1 Wally Collins 3rd overall
2 Darren Young 16th
3 Daniel Afoa 27th
4 Olly Fata 34th
5 Rick Johnston 35th
6 Philip Moore 39th
7 David Moors (only 2 days)