Terengganu cycling team gets pro licence

Posted on January 10, 2011. Filed under: Environment and Livelihoods |

-The Star-

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia’s first state-run professional cycling team, Terengganu Cycling (TCT), have finally made it into the books of the International Cycling Union (UCI).

The UCI confirmed the registration of TCT as a professional continental team last Thursday, making them eligible to race in competitions in Asia.

The good news for the team mean that their star rider, Anuar Manan, who became the first Malaysian to win a stage of the Tour of Langkawi (LTdL) last year, will get the chance to defend the green jersey (points classification) in this season’s edition, which begins on Jan 23.

Their application to race in the 10-stage LTdL is pending confirmation and it is unlikely that the organisers will reject it.

Off the mark: Youngster Amir Farid scored a field goal for UniKL against Tenaga over the weekend in Ipoh.

Terengganu-born Anuar left Geumseng Ginseng Asia to join TCT after his contract with the South Korean outfit expired last month.

Other Terengganu riders in the team are Mohd Hariff Salleh, Mohd Shahrul Mat Amin, Mohd Saufi Mat Senan, Mohd Yusrizal Yusoff and Mohd Shobry Abdullah.

The team will also have foreigners in their ranks – Japanese Shinichi Fukushima, who won a stage in 2007, and Motoi Nara and Thailand’s Phuchong Udomsin.

Among the local lads, Hariff, Shahrul and Yusrizal were part of the national team for the Delhi Commonwealth Games last October with Anuar and Mohd Adiq Hussainie Othman of Drapac Professional Cycling.

The team have been in training in Chiang Rai near the Thailand-Myanmar border since early this month to prepare for the LTdL, which makes a return “home” to Langkawi for the first stage.

The Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) president Abu Samah Abdul Wahab, who initially appeared to be discontent with the idea of forming a state professional team in September last year, was relieved that the team have finally registered with the UCI.

“This will mean a lot for the team and Malaysia as Anuar get the chance to defend the green jersey. I believe he will have a good support from his team-mates and go on to win more stages in the LTdL this time,” said Abu Samah.

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