Marie Claire Aquilina on the podium in the first stage of the Tour ta’ Malta

Friday, March 19, 2010, 9:27

Maltese cyclist Marie Claire Aquilina, representing the Greens Cycling Club, finished third to earn a place on the podium in the first stage of the Tour ta’ Malta, while Etienne Bonello (Greens Cycling Club) and David Galea (Qormi Scott Cycling Club) placed fourth and fifth respectively in the male category, just failing to win a podium place as well.

The first stage of the Tour was a 32 km individual time trial on the Coastline circuit. The first cyclists in action were the girls – 17 participants in all – and these included three Maltese participants – Roberta Bonavia, Danika Bonello and Marie Claire Aquilina. British cyclists Iona Sewell and Miriam Fremantle, both from the Squadra Donne UK team, placed first and second in a time of 53’52” and 55’51” respectively, while Marie Claire Aquilina earned third place with a timing of 56’46”.

The men’s category, which attracted 70 participants, was dominated by Italian cyclists. Francesco Pizzo (Meca Team) finished first in 45’28”, followed by Walter Basili and Eneko Fernandez Pena, both from the Fausto Coppi Fermignano Team, who clocked 47’05” and 47’46” respectively. Etienne Bonello and David Galea clocked the same time of 48’45”, with only a fraction of a second separating them for Bonello to be awarded fourth place and Galea fifth place.

The Tour’s second stage takes place on Friday, 19th March. This will be a Road Race on the San Martin circuit (limits of Mgarr). The men will cover 100 kilometers, while the women will cover 70 kilometers. The race starts at 10.00 a.m.





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