Cy­clists bid farewell to KL Velo­drome with heavy hearts

New Straits Times - - Sport -

MEM­O­RIES are all the Malaysian track cy­clists will have left as they bid farewell to the Kuala Lumpur Velo­drome as it held its last tour­na­ment, the Ju­nior State Track Cy­cling Cham­pi­onship 2017, yes­ter­day.

It may be the last tour­na­ment held at the 29-year old velo­drome but ac­cord­ing to for­mer Malaysian National Cy­cling Fed­er­a­tion (MNCF) deputy pres­i­dent Datuk Naim Mo­hamad, ath­letes are al­lowed to use the fa­cil­ity un­til June in order to pre­pare for Sea Games.

“I was in­formed that Jakel (Trad­ing Sdn Bhd) and DBKL (Kuala Lumpur City Hall) will al­low the velo­drome to be used for train­ing pur­poses at least un­til the end of June,” he said.

Built in 1988, the velo­drome was once host to big track cy­cling events such as the World Cup Qual­i­fiers, Sea Games, Asian Cup Cham­pi­onship, Sul­tan Azlan Shah Cup, Asian Cy­cling Con­fed­er­a­tion (ACC) events and the 1998 Com­mon­wealth Games.

“We saw cham­pi­ons born here and even Az­izul­hasni (Awang) grew up on the track of this velo­drome, so we are grate­fully in­debted for the mem­o­ries.”

The National Velo­drome in Ni­lai is ex­pected to be com­pleted next month and will be the first venue to be ready for the 2017 Sea Games and Asean Para Games.

Naim is op­ti­mistic Malaysia have a bright fu­ture in track cy­cling with ris­ing tal­ents all around such as Asian Cy­cling Cham­pi­onship bronze medal­list Muhd Shah Fir­daus Sahrom’s younger brother Muhd Rid­wan.

“The fu­ture of track (cy­cling) is bright with var­i­ous tal­ents all around, in­clud­ing Fir­daus Sahrom’s brother .

“We (Malaysia) have proven that track cy­cling can be a gold mine and a place where we can pro­duce medals as proven by our lo­cal cy­clists.” Farah Azharie

PIC BY NU­RUL SYAZANA ROSE RAZMAN

Yes­ter­day’s tour­na­ment may be the last at the 29-year old KL velo­drome.

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