Guardini, Tleubayev weakened by stomach trouble overnight
Astana Pro Team rider Andrea Guardini and his teammate Ruslan Tleubayev raced stage nine at the Tour de Langkawi on Friday with their teammates, but after a night with stomach trouble neither was able to contest the sprint finish, and both rolled across the line in Kuala Betang more than a minute behind the winner.
Guardini, who leads the blue jersey points combination at the Tour de Langkawi, said he was awake all night Thursday, and was in no shape to sprint for Friday.
"Today was such a hard day, and I didn't sleep well last night. I feel a little bit better after the race, and I can eat white rice and sleep to get some recovery. We will check again later with the doctor and I will hope to start fully fit tomorrow to defend the blue jersey," Guardini said.
Astana Pro Team Director Sportif Jaan Kirsipuu said the short stage on Thursday helped to make it possible for Guardini and Tleubayev to finish.
"If this had been a 220km day they would have probably abandoned. Both were sick last night, and it was probably just a case of eating something bad. Other riders on the team were fine today, but unfortunately without our sprinter we had no cards to play. Tomorrow will be another short stage, and we hope that the two riders will be healthy and ready to dtart," Kirsipuu said.