Team South Africa made their intentions clear after climbing to the top of the general classification table at the end of yesterday's opening stage of this year's Tour of Rwanda.
After using 3 hours, 49 minutes and 12 seconds for both the Prologue (3.5km) and Stage one (Kigali-Nyagatare), Shaun Ward claimed the yellow jersey while his teammate Dyan Girdlestone, who was seven seconds off the pace, followed closely in second place.
Kudus Merhawi, who rides for Eritrea's UCI Continental Center (UCC), won the first stage to climb to third place (03:49:23).
Adrien Niyonshuti is still the top ranked Rwandan in sixth place (3:49:43) followed by Emmanuel Rudahunga and Nicodem Habiyambere in 23rd and 31st positions respectively.
In Sunday's Prologue race (3.5km), Roy Remi Pelletier, who rides for Team Quebecor Garneau of Canada, reigned supreme after using four minutes and three seconds. His teammate Bruno Langlois and Niyonshuti followed closely in second and third place.
Actions continues today with two stages on cards; stage two is a 44.1km stretch from Kigali to Muhanga while stage three will see riders peddling their bikes from Muhanga to Huye (72.4km).
Selected Day 1 results
1. Ward Shaun | 03:49:12 (South Africa)
2. Dyan Girdlestone | 03:49:19 (South Africa)
3. Kudus Merhawi | 03:49:23 (UCC)
6. Adrien Niyonshuti | 03:49:25 (Karisimbi)
23. Emmanuel Rudahunga (Karisimbi) | 03:50:07
31. Nicodem Habiyambere (Akagera) | 03:50:11
38. Bonaventure Uwizeyimana (Akagera) | 03:50:19
40. Hassan Rukundo (Akagera) | 03:50:20
41. Nathan Byukusenge (Karisimbi) | 03:50:21
42. Abraham Ruhumuriza (Karisimbi) | 03:50:22
43. Gasore Hategeka (Akagera) | 03:50:27
Kigali-Muhanga-Huye - 116.5 km