The Epronex-Hungary team – BringaSport – competed in Bulgaria
The 70th Bulgarian Tournament, with a rating of 2.2, took place from August 26-31, where a prologue, two half-stages and four classic stages await the cyclists. Epronex-Hungary (Christophe Arvay, Patrick Dolchal, Zulte Estelsticker, Karl Adam, Byron Monton and Rosa Balazs) and Team Lotus (Jovan Defnex, Akos Mendeszente, Adam Papai, Marc Perksics, Mihailo Sztoliks and Levente Vasko) in the first field as the Hungarian colors – Balazs is back Rosa as a two-time points competition champion.
On the one-kilometer prologue, Rózsa finished a respectable 9th, and the next day, Zsolt Istlstekker won the only pace section in the first half, thus securing the green jersey, while Karl Adam finished fifth in the field section at the end of the stage. In the afternoon, two serious climbs awaited the cyclists, which were of decisive importance from the point of view of the general race. Istlstekker was present in the detachment, one of whose members managed to score a point in the partial hair, thus retaining first place in the special competition.
Istlstekker was also present during the second field stage escape, but this time he had an assistant in the person of Byron Munton. The Hungarian cyclist won the first qualifier, in front of his colleague, while he finished third in the second, so he succeeded in defending the jersey again. The departure was discovered later, but during the race, Karl Adam finished seventh, thus securing the 10th place in the only Hungarian Continental class.
In the third stage, a two-man breakaway occurred, and although one of its members posed a danger to Istlstekker, the green jersey order remained unchanged in the end – meanwhile Karl Adam came away with another seventh at the end of the stage.
In the fourth stage, a breakaway occurred that did not threaten the green jersey, so the focus was on Adam Carl’s rapid lead, however, at the last right-hand corner, the ATS leader Voster fell, and although Adam avoided falling, he was no longer able to sprint. Those who stayed on their feet fought for the stage win, and Balaz Rosa took advantage of this opportunity and finished sixth.
The final stretch ended again with a field goal, Carl finishing ninth this time. The all-around competition was finally won by Czech Michel Schoran (ATT Investments), and the best Hungarian was Christophe Arfai in 18th place, as a result of which he finished second in the struggle for the white jersey for the best youngster. Zsolt Istlstekker won the points competition so after 2021 and 2022 the green jersey went to Hungary again this year.
In addition to Epronex, Team Lotus also had an excellent race, with one of the team’s Serbian riders, Mihajlo Sztolics, starting fourth in the prologue, thus securing the white jersey, which was followed by an eighth-place finish in the stage. Although he had a huge disadvantage on the mountain stage, he finished in the top ten on all subsequent stages, with 6th, 5th, 3rd (one UCI world ranking point) and 5th place respectively. Meanwhile, the rest of the squad excelled in escaping.
The competition program for the two teams in the Bulgarian championship continued in the footsteps of the Romans 2.2 competition, which started on September 2.
At the end of the 126.5-kilometre first stage, he decided to take to the field, with Karl Adam, who was just a hair away from the podium, taking the prestigious fourth place, while Mihailo Stoliks finished eighth, thus claiming the white jersey of the best young man in the world. This contest too.
The 134km Benzum race the next day also ended in a sprint won by the winner of the first day, Italy’s Filippo Fortin (Maloja Pushbikers), who also finished first overall. Karl Adam finished third this time around, which had already earned him a UCI world ranking point, while he finished fourth in the battle for the yellow jersey, which earned him another twenty points. In addition, Ibronix excelled in the team competition and finished second. During this time, Lotus also had something to celebrate, as Sztolics finished sixth on the stage and in the aggregate, which was worth ten UCI points, in addition, the Pécs rider also retained the white jersey.