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Tour de Lunsar – 2023 Race Recap

Science in Sport Tour de Lunsar 2023 – the biggest and brightest yet and this year it was blown apart by one team and one rider in particular. Team Access by Pitstop Lagos made the trip over from Nigeria to Sierra Leone and brought a stacked team with them, led by team leader Preye John Dede 

This year’s edition of the race was once again an explosion of life, and a powerful reminder of what cycling is meant to be about. The world’s most beautiful sport, playing out in one of its most captivating countries. This race is quickly becoming known as West Africa’s noisiest bike race, but this year it wasn’t just the noise riders had to contend with as the searing heat of the Sierra Leonean sun beating down on them added its own challenges. 


The men were locking horns vying for the coveted Science in Sport yellow leaders’ jersey. For the first time ever, two international teams took to the start as they sought to end the dominance of LCT at their home race. Team Access by Pitstop Lagos from Nigeria and Team Mike’s Bike p/b Equator with a couple of riders from the United States.  



The first stage of the race was one of absolute dominance by Team Access by Pitstop Lagos, they put the hammer down from 0KM, forcing a four-man break to go clear with three Team Access riders and American Jack Duncan from Mike’s Bikes. After a barrage of attacks, it was Duncan who lost the wheel of the group giving Team Access the chance to battle out the win between the teammates. Ultimately it was leader John Dede who took the win and the leader’s jersey with it, check out the effort of the rider below from the team. It was thirsty work for the team who cooled off with the SiS Hydro Tablets provided to riders to help them replenish essential electrolytes before taking them to the podium and collecting all of the jerseys between them.  



It was a similar story on the second day of racing as Dede doubled up with another win, he was overshadowed by a third-place win from the in form of young Ibrahim Kamara, which caused the crowds to erupt for a home victory and show that this rising star from Sierra Leone is going from strength to strength. In the middle of the two West African riders was Jack Duncan from Mike’s Bikes, the American fought hard for a 2nd spot on the podium, as you can see from the activity below, with a 165bpm heart rate average throughout the stage it was a gruelling day out. Luckily riders having access to the SiS energy nutrition on course athletes were well fuelled which helped intensify the action. 



On the third day of racing the riders were getting accustomed to the dominance and strength of the Team Access riders, working seamlessly together, they made the racing hard and the outcome was the same. A win from the man of the Tour – John Dede, and another podium lockout by his teammates, although this time the racing was closer with other riders getting closer to the action. Basking in the glory of another stage win, Dede was starting to look like the champion elect as he pulled on his third Science in Sport yellow jersey of the race. It also provided the fastest day of racing with an average of 41.6km/h in 36-degree heat.  



Ahead of the final stage, all the talk was about whether Dede could complete a historic clean sweep of stage wins. Ultimately it was teammate Bright Emmanuel, who soloed his way to victory in spectacular fashion to take arguably the most impressive win of the race. Dede finished alongside his GC rivals to claim Nigeria’s first Science in Sport yellow jersey.  

For the first time in the race’s history, the final podium did not contain a Sierra Leonean rider. The nation’s highest finisher, Tenesie Dixon, took sixth place in the overall standings. Facing opposition from outside of Sierra Leone is a great way for local riders to improve as it tests their abilities against riders they wouldn’t normally be taking on. This is one of the ways the Tour is developing the sport of cycling within Sierra Leone and providing opportunities for riders from all across West Africa to sharpen their skills. 


To find out more about the #SiSTourdeLunsar then head to the Tour de Lunar race centre 

Written By

The Performance Solutions Team