The drama unfolded as Excellent Noodles’ third man Ryan Tugawin stunned the cycling community, making an electrifying sprint to victory on stage 7. The 32-year-old Solano, Nueva Vizcaya rider is now listed as one of the three Excellent Noodles riders who obtained stage wins in this LBC Ronda Pilipinas 2022 edition.
Tugawin capped off the race with an impressive clocking of 4 hours, 31 minutes, and 16 seconds at an average stage speed of 38.60 kilometers per hour.
Before the start of the race, EXN Tugawin was experiencing stomach discomfort, and he was 15th in the ranking or 14 minutes and 19 seconds behind the overall leader. In the same way, KOM leader El Joshua Carino completed the race ahead of Team Nueva Ecija’s second man Marcelo Felipe.
Meanwhile, PNSI Ronald Oranza defended the highly coveted red jersey and sustained the slim margin of 42 seconds over Excellent Noodles top rider Jan Paul Morales who now donned the KOM. Likewise, PNSI Jeremy Lizardo and DRE Edson Corbadora retained the Yellow and Rookie jerseys.
Apparently, PNSI Oranza and EXN Morales never separated from start to finish along the 174.5 backbreaking and lung-busting stage 7.
As LBC Ronda Pilipinas 2022 stage seven concluded in Baler, Aurora, Le Tour de Filipinas 2018 titlist and Mangaldan pride El Joshua Carino
unknowingly set a new record for Philippine cycling by registering three consecutive stage 1st runner-up finishes in multi-stage racing.
After stage 7, Carino moved up to the sixth spot in the GC, lagging behind teammate and overall leader Ronald Oranza.
On the other hand, PNSI Coach Reinhard Gorantes relayed to DWAENTERTAINMENT the status of PNSI U-23 rider Esteve Hora and narrated what happened yesterday 50 kilometers from the zero mark: “Before Laur, nasiraan si Jeremy Lizardo, ang kasalukuyang Yellow Jersey wearer, at nakita ni Hora along the way. Binigay nya yung bike niya kay Lizardo. Natuwa naman ako kay Hora sa ginawa nya, nag-sacrifice siya for the team. Though, binigyan parin namin ng bike si Esteve galing sa aming team vehicle, kaso malaki at hindi fit sa kanya, ginamit parin nya pero hindi na siya naging comfortable, kaya nag-DNF na lang siya.“
As regards the status of Excellent Noodles top Under-23 rider Mar Sudario, who was on the 6th overall and 2nd in Under-23 after stage 6, Sudario relayed to DWAENTERTAINMENT his regret about his DNF status and he quickly narrated: “Hanggang sa stage 7 akala ko nawala na INIINDA ko pero nung nag kilometer 70 na naramdaman ko na naman tapos sinabi ko kay Kapitan Santy na may iniinda ako na sakit sa left ko na paa sabi niya itutok mo lang pero kahit anong pilit ko ayaw na talaga, sborang sakit parang naipit ugat ko. Hanggang sa ngayon po pina-check ako sa doctor, binigyan ako gamot at tapos kailangan ko daw magpa-therapy.”
EXN Sudario is among the ill-starred nine riders including PNSI U-23 rider Hora Commissaires panel tagged as DNF at the end of stage 7.