Sorry for the Delay but we had a very busy month after the Tour with other activities! We just wanted to say a Big thank you too all the cyclists that participated in the Tour and made it as great as it was! We also wish to thank all the helpers! without you, the tour definitely would have not been as successful as it was!
We want to inform you that next year’s tour will be Held between the 22nd and 25th of March 2018! The Website will again be used for registration and we will also add a feature to pay the registration fee on the website.
Here is the full report of the Tour:
Two in a row for Marie Claire Aquilina
Marie Claire Aquilina won the Tour ta’ Malta for the second consecutive year after succeeding in preserving her overall advantage during the fourth and final stage. In the Elite category, William Brown rubberstamped his dominance while Lukas Katapodis topped the charts in the Masters category.
First stage – 6 April 2017
The first stage of the 12 km time trail race at the 23rd edition of the International cycling Tour of Malta started in ideal weather taking place at Coast road, Bahar ic-Caghaq. A record number of cyclists participated. They came from seven local clubs and sixteen foreign ones, along with a number of individual cyclists spanning various European countries. The first day obtained great success for the Maltese female cyclists, among 24 cyclists, Michelle Vella Wood (Team Greens) ended in first with a time of 23: 29.61. In second place was another Maltese cyclist, Marie Claire Aquilina also of Team Greens ended with a time of 23: 46.62. England’s Stephanie Mottram of NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli entered third with a time of 24: 12.25.
The Masters’ category was won by Greek Lukas Katapodis of Pegasus Cycling Club in 22: 01.75. He was followed by James Stewart of the British Club, Bonito Squadra Corse in 22: 02.74, while Maltese Michael Camilleri of Team Greens finished third in 22: 09:12.
The main focus was the Elite category which was won by Matthew Davies (Rhino Velo Race Team) in 21: 15.84. He was followed by Thomas Strand (Velostrada Test Team) in 21: 23.47 and William Brown (Brother NRG Driveplan) in 21: 27.84. Maltese Etienne Bonello (Team Greens) finished fourth in 21: 36.18.
At the end of the stage, Claudio Lattanzio, an Anza journalist and photographer, Fernando Ranalli, President of the Aquila Provincial Cycling Federation and Anthony Brigulio, Member of the Organizing Committee presented medals and red jerseys to the overall winners.
Second stage – 7 April 2017
The second stage of the 23rd edition of the Tour of Malta Cycling continued at St. Paul’s Bay By-Pass amounting to eleven turns for the Elite and eight for both the Masters and Female category.
After the stage no local cyclist finished on the podium but Michelle Vella Wood of Team Greens kept the red shirt in the female category. Even the Greek Lukas Katapodis of Pegasus C.C. kept the red shirt in the Masters while in Elite category William Brown took over as the new leader.
William Brown (Fiesten Tempo) won the elite category in 1: 33: 38.10, followed by Jack Rees (Brother Driverplan NRD) in 1: 33: Danny Smith (Mammoth Life Style) finished in third place in 1: 33: 45.48.
The Masters Category was won by Dave Griffits of Mammoth Life Style in 1: 13: 43.05, followed by Lukas Katapodis of Pegasus Cycling Club in 1: 13: 44.05 and Jim Jones (Velo Vitesse) in 1: 13: 44.08 in second and third place respectively.
The Female category was won by Elice Sharp (NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli) in 1: 16: 36.39. In second place was Ellen McDermott (EDCO Continental) in 1: 18: 37.41, while Gabriella Nordin (Team Greens) ended in third with a time of 1: 18: 37.75.
The first Maltese cyclist in the Elite category was Alex Pettett (Pro Action All Stars) finishing in fifth, while Maurice Formosa (The Cyclists) finished a place behind in sixth.
At the end of the stage, Joe Bajada, General Secretary of the Malta Cycling Federation, Barry Withmore, Member of the Organizing Committee and Jonathan Barbara, Private Secretary of the Parliamentary Secretary for Sport presented the medals and the red shirt to overall leaders.
Third day – 8 April 2017
The 23rd edition of the Tour ta’ Malta reached a crucial point with the completion of the third stage, a 60 kilometer road race held over a circuit in the limits of Nadur, Gozo.
There were two new leaders at the end of the day’s racing, Matthew Higgins shot to the top in the men’s Elite and Marie Claire Aquilina took over from compatriot Michelle Vella Wood in the women’s race.
Greek Lukas Katapodis, of Pegasus Cycling Club, held on to his leader’s red shirt in the Masters tour.
The Elite category race was won by Henrik Forland, of Velostrada Test Team. He pedaled home in 1:30:28.05. Matthew Higgins, of Mammoth Lifestyle, was second in 1:30:29.14 and Matthew Davies, of Rhino Race Team Velo, third in 1:32: 32.48.
The Masters race was won by Dave Griffits, of Mammoth Life Style in 1:03:56.61, he was followed by Jim Jones (Velo Vitesse) in 1:03:56.89) and Ian Knights (Racing Team Raw) in 1:03:56.96 in that order.
The women’s race in Nadur saw Elice Sharp (NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli) making it two stage wins in a row after coming home first in 1:07:35.61. Ellen McDermott (EDCO Continental) was second in 1:07:35.92 and Stephanie Mottram, of NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli, third in 1:07:36.49.
Aquilina timed her race to perfection to start the morning’s fourth and last stage of the Tour – at the circuit in San Martin – enjoying a slight lead over her nearest pursuers.
At the end of the stage, Joyce Farrugia, Director of Sports in the Ministry for Gozo, Alvin Grech, CEO of Gozo Sports Board and Joe Bajada, General Secretary of the Malta Cycling Federation have presented medals and red jerseys to the overall leaders.
Fourth day – 9 April 2017
This Cycling Tour ta’ Malta was another success for the home nation as Marie Claire Aquilina defended the title she won last year and once again confirmed that she is best local female cyclist. The circuit at St. Martin consisted of ten laps for the Elite, and six for the Masters and Female cyclists.
In the Elite category, William Brown rubberstamped his dominance when he made it two wins in a row in two hours 28 minutes and 33.58 seconds. The Fietsen Tempo cyclist finished ahead of Danny Smith (Mammoth Life Style) in 2:30:03.78 while Velostrada Test Team member Henrik Forland recorded a time of 2:30:05.83 to complete the podium places. William Brown finished with a combined time of 5:56:21.29 to take the honours ahead of Forland (5:57:30.98) and Smith (5:58:26.28).
Team Greens rider Etienne Bonello was the first Maltese representative in the list with an aggregate time of 6:02:42.18. Behind him placed Alex Pettett (Pro Action All Stars) in 6:04:05:55 and third placed Christian Formosa (The Cyclists) in a total time of 6:04:55.55.
Lukas Katapodis of Pegasus Cycling Club won the final stage of the Masters division to wrap up an overall victory. He raced to the finish line in 1:31:45.35 ahead of Dave Griffiths (Mammoth Life Style) 1:31:47.74 and Team Ballatore’s Domenico Livorsi 1:31:52.07. In the final standings, Katapodis topped the charts in 4:11:28.30. James Stewart (Bonito Squadra Corse) placed second in 4:11:47.57 while Dave Griffiths (4:11:52.78) completed the podium.
Michael Camilleri of Team Greens was the first local rider in the standings of the best Maltese in 4:16:18.47. Second was David Galea (The Cyclists) in 4:18: 30.73, while Paul Zarb (The Cyclists) finished third in 4: 19: 18.32.
The Female category was won by Elice Sharp (NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli) in a time of 1:47:15.83. Second place finisher was Stephanie Mottram of NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli time of 1:47:19.06 while the third ended Ganriella Nordin (Team Greens) time of 1:47:20.11.
Marie Claire Aquilina (Team Greens) ended with the red shirt as the winner of the Female Tour for a second successive year after succeeding in preserving her overall advantage during the fourth and final stage as she ensured and remained in front of her rivals during the 88km road race at the demanding San Martin circuit with an overall time of four hours 37 minutes and 36.06. Stephanie Mottram was second in 4:37:46.19 ahead of Elice Sharp (4:38:15.99).
Elice Sharp, of NCC Group-Kuota-Torelli, bagged her second successive stage win when completing the distance in one hour 47 minutes 15.83 seconds. Team-mate Stephanie Mottram was runner-up in 1:47:19.06 ahead of Gabriella Nordin (Team Greens) who clocked 1:47.20.11.
As the best Maltese cyclists, Marie Claire Aquilina was first in a total time of 4:37:36.06. Second place was team mate Michelle Vella Wood with a total time of 4:41:18.99 while finishing in third was Stephanie Alden (The Cyclists) with a total time of 4:43:18.91.
At the end of the stage, John Zammit, Joe Bajada, Daniel Borg Olivier, the President, General Secretary and Treasurer respectively of the Malta Cycling Federation, Antonio Brigulio, Member of the Organizing Committee, Fernando Ranalli, President of the Aquila Provincial Cycling Federation and Hon David Agius, Shadow Minister for Sport presented the medals, trophies and the red shirt to the overall leaders. John Zammit the President of the Tour ta’ Malta 2017, presented the Merit Awards to Barry Whitmore and Antonio Brigulio for their participation in the various editions of the same tour.
The Organizing Committee likes to thank several sponsors including the Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Education and Labor, Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sport, Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure, Ministry for Gozo, Sport Malta, Malta Olympic Committee, Gozo Sports Board, the Malta Tourism Authority, Local Councils of St. Paul’s Bay, Mgarr and Nadur, Gozo, General Soft Drinks, Lions Tea, BBB Cycling, Garmin, as well as Police Force, Warden, Transport Malta, ARRTS Timing System, SOREDA Hotel and Palazzin Hotel. Special thanks to all the clubs and participating cyclists, as well as journalist/photographer Claudio Lattanzio of Agenzia Anza for his services. They would also like to thank the general public for all their cooperation as everything went as desired for the undoubtedly great success of this Tour which finished with loads of praise from all those who participated.
Photoes: Claudio Lattanzio (Agenzia Ansa) and Joe Bajada