Local Sport > Cycling > FORMOSA AND BONELLO SPITERI LEAD THE PACK

FORMOSA AND BONELLO SPITERI LEAD THE PACK

Maurice Formosa retained top billing in the second outing of the Malta Cross Country National Point Series held on the last weekend of February.

This time, Mġarr played host to another record number of entries showing that riders are not deterred by the rocky and technical terrain that this route offers.


The 4.5km Mgarr circuit offers cyclists a breathtakingly scenic coastal ridge characterised by rough and rocky terrain and a few hair raising technical drops with the unique Gnejna as a backdrop.

Elite Category

With a closely fought battle to the finish, the Elite podium was once again made up of Maurice Formosa (The Cyclist), Etienne Bonello (Team Greens) and Patrick Scicluna (Mosta AF Sign Studio) who led the pack from the very start.

Formosa and Bonello started off head to head, though Formosa attacked on the narrow part of the course in Lap 2 to give himself a thirteen second advantage over Bonello.

Formosa kept the momentum and his advantage over Bonello, though the latter put in valiant attempts to narrow this gap. Ultimately it was Formosa who once again clinched top billing in a time of 1 hour 12 minutes 35 seconds.

Bonello had to settle for second place crossing the finish line in 1 hour 14 minutes and 27 seconds. Scicluna, once again gave a consistent performance to follow in third place in 1 hour 17 minutes 39 seconds.

The overall leaderboard in this category remains unchanged, with the trio taking up the top three places.

Open Category
Once again this category welcomed more new faces to the group. Ack Hili, who in the first race of the Series settled for third place, saw him take charge from the very first lap to lead the way throughout and win the 5 lap course in a time of 55 minutes 36 seconds.

In second place was newcomer Matthew Gauci, who followed in 57 minutes 3 seconds – Gauci was not as close to the podium in the first race having bagged a sixth place.

Francesco Sultana, winner for the first race of the series had to settle for third place clocking at time of 57 minutes 51 seconds.

With one win each Hili and Sultana now share equal points on the overall leaderboard, followed by Matthew Gauci. This Category will be one to watch this season with some very determined performances being displayed.

Ladies Category

Despite a slightly disappointing turnout in this category, there was still action to be enjoyed.

With top female rider Marie Claire Aquilina out of the fray, it was evident that Danica Bonello Spiteri (Team Greens) was the main contender for the top place on the podium.

Nevertheless, Claudine Gatt (Mosta AF Sign Studio), was out to make up for her disappointment in the first race which saw her stop in the second lap due to technical issues with her bike.

Bonello Spiteri took the lead from the very start and kept her position until the end, winning the four lap race in 1 hour 11 minutes 43 seconds.

Gatt fought hard to narrow the gap and followed in second place 37 seconds behind Bonello Spiteri. Fiona Darmanin Tedesco followed in third place in 1 hour 18 minutes 20 seconds. With Sunday’s win Bonello Spiteri has top billing on the overall leaderboard.

Age Groups

Daniel Vella, Paul Zarb (The Cyclist) and Brian Magri took home the Juniors, Masters 40+ and Masters 50+ Categories.

The Malta Cross Country National Point Series kicked off in January and will end in May when the fifth race of the Series takes place.

The next race of the Malta Cross Country National Points Series will take place on Sunday 18th March in Majjistral Park.
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