Kobayashi and Yoneda victorious in Japanese mountains


The Niseko Classic was organised for the first time ten years ago and is part of the UCI Gran Fondo World Series since 2016 in the famous ski-area on the northern island of Hokkaido.

The 150km counting as qualifier distance for all men under 50 is challenging with a lot of elevation, especially in the first half of the race.

Overall winner was Ryo Kobayashi in a time of 3h46 and an average speed of 38.77 km/h. He was the fastest in the final with a small gap to a group of 15 other riders with Kazuki Adachi in second at 5 seconds and Shota Shimano as third in the same time on the steep uphill finish for a complete Japanese podium.

In the 80km race counting as qualifier for all women, the overall victory was for Kazumi Yoneda in 2h16 and an average speed of 34.35 km/h, 4m50 faster than Ishikawa Nanami with Sakurako Fututani as third five seconds later.

Fastest men in the 50+ categories qualifying on the 80km course was Tomoki Nakatsuru from the M50-54 category in an average speed of 37.92 km/h. He outsprinted Atsushi Yamamoto and Toshihiko Watanabe.


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