Probolinggo, East Java. Iranian cyclist Mehdi Sohrabi of Tabriz Petrochemical edged closer to the Tour d’Indonesia championship after finishing second in the eighth stage on Monday.
Sohrabi still holds the yellow jersey after finishing the 62.7-kilometer stage from Surabaya to Probolinggo in 2 hours, 27 minutes, 45 seconds. He leads the overall classification in 23:48:27.
Countryman and Tabriz teammate Ghader Mizbani Iranagh trails the leader by more than two minutes, with Andrey Mizuroj of Tabriz a further five minutes behind.
Russia’s Sergey Kudentsov, who races for Indonesian team Polygon Sweet Nice, won the eighth stage, crossing the finish line just ahead of Sohrabi. Malaysian National Team cyclist Mohammad Zamri Salleh was third.
With the shortest stage of the race taking place on largely flat roads, the day ended with a huge peloton.
Local rider Bayu Satrio of Kutai Timur won the intermediate sprint event at the 26.7-kilometer mark, but Sohrabi still leads the sprinters’ standings with 20 points.
Hari Fitrianto of Polygon Sweet Nice held on to the red and white jersey, which is awarded to the top Indonesian racer. Hari is one minute ahead of Didit Purwanto of DI Yogyakarta and two minutes faster than Budi Santoso of United Bike Kencana.
“I think Hari’s place at the top of local classification is safe unless an accident happens,” Polygon Sweet Nice team director Harijanto Tjondrokusumo said. “That’s why I’ve been instructing the racers to play it safe and help Hari maintain his lead.”
Hari, however, has no intention of playing it safe.
“I want to go as fast as I can and win the remaining stages instead of playing it safe,” he said.
The Tour continues today with the 192.5-kilometer ninth stage from Probolinggo to Banyuwangi.