One of Berbice’s finest cycling talents, Romello Crawford weathered the storm on a rainy Sunday morning on the Corentyne highways to take top honours in the Mohabir Baljeet Sukhpaul memorial cycling race. Crawford stopped the clock of the 46-mile race at two hours one minute.
Owing to persistent rain across the Ancient County, the race pedalled off from 09:00h at the Sukhpaul Gas Station in New Amsterdam, and finished at the Corriverton Sukhpaul Gas Station. Crawford was tag-teamed by the Hicks brothers, but that proved insufficient as he won the intense sprint against the older Hicks, Andrew, who finished second.
Young David Hicks came in third while Mario Washington rode in fourth and Jason Cameron came in fifth. Crawford took four sprint prizes while David and Andrew had three sprint prizes each.
In the veterans’ category, Syborne Fernandes took the top spot while Fitzroy Tang came in second.
In the junior category, David Hicks, who came in third overall, emerged as the victor while Mario Washington (second) and Jeremiah Joseph (third) rounded out the top three. Richard Crandon and Raj Mootoo were the top two juveniles.
After the race, the champion cyclist credited his experience and class for the result. Crawford said that conditions were terrible in the cold breeze. He noted that the Hicks brothers tried to tag-team him, but he overcame that battle to emerge as victor. With a host of racing events set for April-May, the lad from Number One Road said he was aiming to register wins. He said he recently began training and was slowly peaking.
The race had 16 sponsors in total and two minor accidents; it was the first in the Ancient County for the 2021 season, and was hailed a success. According to cycling coach Randolph Roberts, this race and the others to follow will prepare the Berbice riders for the national cycling championships.
The title sponsors, the Sukhpauls, were delighted with the showing of the cyclists, and this race marked the second Sukhpaul-sponsored event. The next race in the Ancient County is set for May 2, with that event being the Crawford-sponsored race.