Posted: Monday, March 15, 2021. 8:58 pm CST.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Henry Li finished 3rd in the 18+ Category in the one-hour criterium of the MZ Tour in Merida on Sunday, while placing fifth overall in that event.
In the general classification, Li was 12th in the 18+ category and 17th overall.
Li and four other Belizean riders were participating in a cycling stage race for the first time since the start of the pandemic last year March.
On Friday, 15-year-old Dion O’Brien finished in second place in the Stage One individual time trial in the 15-18 Category, but he had mechanical problems in the next two stages.
Wasani Castro’s best position was seventh in the 18+ Category in Stage 2 100-mile road race on Saturday. He was 10th overall in that race.
His brother Jafari was 10th in that same race in the 18+ and 15th in the overall.
Dwayne Wade, who was the only Belizean in the 35+ Category, was 11th in his category and 28th overall in the general classification.
On Saturday, Wade reported to Breaking Belize News that in the 20K Stage 1 on Friday, “Li had the best time of our group clocking 27:55.15 finishing 14th in the 18+ and 21st overall.”
In Stage 2, Wade and Wasani Castro were in a decisive break chasing a top 10 with Wasani finishing 7th in the 18+ and Wade 12th in the 35+ category.”
The MZ Tour is a three-day three-stage race held around the city of Merida. It was originally planned for early January.
The first stage was a 20K individual time trial on Friday, March 12, the second was a 160-kilometer race (100 miles) on Saturday, and the third was a one-hour criterium on Sunday.
Hao Cheng Lee, Henry Li’s brother, who provided information, pictures, and live Facebook streaming from Merida, said the team, traveled independently, except for Li who got assistance from L&A Bike shop in OW and Tropic Air.
Not a bad showing by our Belizean riders considering this was their first competitive event in a year.
“It shows we are on par with the competition on the road,” Wade said. “We need work in the ITT area but on the road we are strong. Saturday was an extremely hard stage and we rode strong.”
Mexican 18+ rider Allan Carrillo was the overall winner with a time of five hours, 29 minutes, and 16 seconds. The 35+ winner was Jesús Perales who clocked 5:32:21.
The following are the Belizean riders’ statistics:
Wasani Castro (18+)
GC: 05:46:47.94 15th overall, 10th in 18+
Stage 1 00:28:51.7 26th overall, 17th in 18+
Stage 2 04:10:16.13 10th overall, 7th in 18+
Stage 3 01:07:40.11 15th overall, 12th in 18+
Henry Li (18+)
GC: 05:49:15.38 17th overall, 12th in 18+
Stage 1 00:27:55.15 21st overall, 14th in 18+
Stage 2 04:13:44.12 22nd overall, 14th in 18+
Stage 3 01:07:36.11 5th overall, 3rd in 18+
Jafari Castro (18+)
GC: 05:49:49.49 19th overall, 13th in 18+
Stage 1 00:28:25.26 23rd overall, 16th in 18+
Stage 2 04:13:44.12 15th overall, 10th in 18+
Stage 3 01:07:40.11 14th overall, 11th in 18+
Dwayne Wade (35+ Category)
GC: 06:02:53.34 28th overall, 11th in 35+
Stage 1 00:00:30:10 35th overall, 15th in 35+
Stage 2 04:20:43.83 29th overall, 12th in 35+
Stage 3 01:11:59.51 26th overall, 10th in 35+
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