This morning I went to watch the final stage of the Tour de Taiwan. The stage was a criterium held on a one kilometre street circuit around the Taipei City Hall. A criterium is probably the one of the best ways for spectators to view a cycling race as the riders whizz past every minute or so and it is easy to see who is in the lead.
The race got underway a little after ten o'clock and a break away of five riders quickly established itself. They gradually built a lead on the main peloton that grew to 50 seconds with about 22 laps of the 60 lap race remaining. At that point the chief commissaire decided to stop the peloton and allow the five leaders two more laps to decide the result.
This resulted in some confusion among the riders. Although the decision did not end up affecting the general classification. The end result was Japanese rider Hirose Satoshi from the Aisan Racing Team took out the stage.
The overall victory in the 2007 Tour de Taiwan went to US rider Shawn Milne from the Health Net presented by Maxxis team who had led going into the stage. Milne also won the green jersey for the best sprinter.
The other results of the race were Yakovlev Yevgeniy from the Indonesian Polygon team won the blue jersey for the best Asian rider. Peng Kui-hsiang (彭貴祥) from the Giant Asia Racing Team won the white jersey for the best placed Taiwanese rider. The Continental Cycling team from Luxembourg was first in the teams classification.
It was great to see a quality international cycling event in Taipei, but it is a pity the crowds were so small. You can see many more photos of the event at flickr.
I also posted a short video of the race at YouTube.