−cyclists gearing for competitive & productive 2017
Closing off the 2016 year of cycling, it can be said that there has been some strides in the right direction for the sport.
Looking back at the year, it can be seen what should appropriately be termed ‘the changing of the guard’ as we witnessed the emergence of some new forces in the sport that have taken up the mantel to carry the sport into the New Year.
While the usual competition came from the two front running clubs, Team Cocos and Team Gillette Evolution, Team Alanis and We Stand United were not to be counted out.
Heading towards the end of the year, the Guyana Cycling Federation suffered a wakeup call as stakeholders voiced their concerns about the management of the sport, forcing an emergency meeting which signaled the dissolution of the Federation and the implementation of an interim body.
With 49 races being recorded over the 2016 season, Evolution easily had the better year with a total of 28 wins. Orville Hinds capping off the year as the most successful rider with 11 wins, followed by Micheal Anthony and Raul Leal, all of Evolution with seven wins. Their team mate, Marlon Williams had three wins.
On the other hand, Cocos had a remarkable five race winning streak as part of their eight race wins for the year. The highpoint of the team came in the form of Jamaul John winning the Digicel Breast Cancer ride and Hamza Eastman winning the Kadir Memorial Ounce of Gold race.
Meanwhile, emerging from the shadows of the two clubs was Linden Bauxite Flyers’ rider, ShaquelAgard who won the National Three Stage tournament.
While it was a year to forget for top rider, Alonzo Greaves who served a one year ban was admitted back to riding and immediately made a mark in the national three stage races. He managed two wins in his limited amount of races for the year.
It will definitely be a treat to see who will take over come 2017.
United We Stand had decimated the competition in 2016, showing great promises for the 2017 season and the club in the future. In the spot light, the duo of Rapheal Leung and Andrew Hicks who have toppled the competition with 11 and eight wins respectively.
Hicks managed to distance himself from the competition as he rode off with the cycling title in the National Schools Cycling tournament.
It is safe to say that the future of cycling is in good hands with these up and coming youths.
On the flip side, while the older men are past their prime, their body and mind still produce the strength to compete and win. Standing out amongst the pack was Team Cocos Junior Niles who crippled his opponents with 17 wins, almost as much wins as his rivals combined!
JaikarranSukhai was his closest rival with three wins.
Geron Williams and Cherrie Fraser-Greene have both been exceptional for Guyana in the international scene, taking part in the tour of Tobago championships among other international races. It is no surprise that the pair was awarded at the sport’s annual award ceremony for their efforts offshore.
Looking to 2017
By virtue of missing nearly the entire season, Alonzo Greaves is eager to reclaim the top spot while he will be faced with stern competition from young ShaquelAgard who has blood in his eyes to make it to the top.
Agard finished third on the rankings, ahead of Raul Leal who suffered a freak accident for the second time in his career and is likely to be missing from action in the first half of the season.
Raynauth Jeffrey will be looking to put 2016 behind him where he suffered a number of mechanical and health problems coming down to the closing off of the season but has said that he is already preparing for the new year.