Changing your rear wheel without touching the cog set

Organiser | 9th Sep 2015 | NEWS

After a one-year hiatus, the 2015 Tour de Bintan sees the return of the popular Prologue time trial to kick off three days of racing action on November 6.

Keeping in line with a policy which has seen the tour visit different parts of Bintan, race organisers MetaSport have designed a Prologue course that will highlight the new Lagoi Bay development in the Bintan Resorts area of the Indonesian island.

Now in its sixth edition, the tour will once again be headquartered in its traditional home of the Nirwana Gardens resort, which is just a short 9km spin away from the Plaza Lagoi where the Prologue will start and finish.

The 11km test of speed and power against the clock will be slightly hillier and a bit more technical than the previous Tour de Bintan ITT course as it negotiates the twists, turns and undulations of an out-and-back loop connecting the Lagoi Bay and Ria Bintan resort areas.

Part of the Tour de Bintan’s appeal is its location. The island is just an hour’s ferry trip from Singapore but on arrival it feels like another world. The lush green landscape, quiet and well-paved roads to ride on, and the generous hospitality of the easy-going local population, provide a striking contrast to the hustle and bustle of Singapore.

As in previous editions, the Prologue is only for the Cat 1, Cat 2 and Women’s races, and will again act as a qualifier for the Cat 2 field, with the fastest 100 riders moving forward to take part in Stage 1 proper on the Saturday morning.

Those Cat 2 riders missing the ITT cut will drop into the Cat 3 contest, which sees a change in its format for 2015. The massive Cat 3 field will again be split into three bunches on safety grounds, but this year there will be no qualification from each bunch after Stage 1 to take part in Stage 2. Instead, there will be three distinct Cat 3 races for the entire tour, with stage, Ace Sprint, KOM and general classification winners recognized from each contest.

The green sprinters and polka dot climbers jerseys are awarded across all competitive categories, with Stage 1 and Stage 2 both featuring two pre-designated sprint points for each of those competitions.

The centrepiece of the Tour de Bintan is still the venerable 154km pilgrimage through the heart of Bintan that is Stage 1. While there are no major climbs on the course, it is seldom flat, and the near constant diet of rolling hills and heat and humidity always ensures an epic day in the saddle for all the competitors.

While the main focus of the Tour de Bintan is the racing, it also offers a Gran Fondo for those cyclists who want to experience riding a fully supported event but without the stress of competition. The Gran Fondo Double is for the most adventurous and covers the full course of stages 1 and 2, while those just looking to ride just Stage 1 can choose between the Gran Fondo Classic (154km) and Gran Fondo Challenge (82km).

To register and for full information on the race, visit www.tourdebintan.com.