Max Walscheid (NTT Pro Cycling) produced a powerful sprint to win the final stage of the Tour de Langkawi, and in doing so, he also rode away with the green points jersey.
The final stage of the Tour de Langkawi took place on the island of Langkawi, over a 108km route which also included 6 local laps on a 9km circuit. NTT Pro Cycling wanted to end the UCI 2.HC event on a high note by securing the green jersey on the shoulders of Walscheid and also taking aim at the final stage win.
It would not be a straight forward sprint stage though as the local lap also included a steep 1km climb. It was no surprise that there were numerous attacks on the climb but NTT Pro Cycling made sure to be part of all those moves. First, with Dylan Sunderland and then with Samuele Battistella.
Battistella proved to be on a good day, as he followed a counter attack with 3 laps to go and then continued on to take the lead in the race with one other rider. Behind, the peloton was splintering each lap but Walscheid was holding strong, with help from his teammates.
When the final lap began, Battistella was 25″ ahead of a reduced chasing peloton, that still included Walscheid. Having two cards to play in the final was tactically perfect by NTT Pro Cycling. Walscheid waited in the wheels of his team as the peloton was forced to chase Battistella.
Our u23 World Champion put in a stellar ride, only to be caught in the final kilometer. Walscheid then stepped up, and was led out perfectly by Michael Carbel to power to the stage win and the green jersey.