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Easter Grand Prix to highlight new stars

Friday, March 30, 2018
T&T cyclists Jabari Whiteman, left, and Tyler Cole.

This years Easter International Cycling Grand Prix hosted by Madonna Wheelers, the oldest registered cycling club in T&T will pedal off this evening and end tomorrow at the Arima Velodrome, Arima Municipal Stadium from 6pm each day.

At a press briefing at the Arima Velodrome on Monday, T&T Cycling Federation president Robert Farrier said when Arima Wheelers decided to stage the event he personally decided to assist, when he learnt of attempts by Arima Mayor Lisa Morris Julian to refurbish the lights at the facility for the Easter.

This year's Grand Prix will take a different complexion as the federation has been attempting to align its calendar of events with the International Cycling Union (UCI), making it difficult to get top international cyclist for the event.

"The international cycling calendar ends after the World Championship in March, which always lends a challenge for us to get top class international cyclists for the Easter weekend. The UCI has changed its calendar in a particular way where the track calendar ends in March. Therefore this weekend will bring a new dimension easter weekend cycling," Farrier explained.

He noted, "There is something call total participation in sport, it lends to a lot of that in our calendar where we satisfy all our other cyclists in T&T."

From this change the country's top sprinters such as Njisane Phillip, Nicholas Paul and Kwesi Brown, all of whom represented T&T at the Tissot UCI World Cup in Minsk, Belarus in January will not be featured. The trio, which finished fifth in the Team Sprint at the World Cup, are currently at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia.

However, Farrier believes the Grand Prix event will be equally entertaining as his federation has been a key promoter of the sport and cyclists throughout the Caribbean for many years, and is expected to be graced by the participation iof most of the regional riders again this year.

The country's top endurance riders such as Jabari Whiteman, Tyler Cole, Joshua Alexander, Alexi and Jessica Costa, Cristien Farah are expected also to put on a good show, Farrier said.

Madonna Wheelers representative Ronald Peters said his club takes pride in staging the event, being the oldest club in T&T. He said it had the honour to have the first T&T cyclist at the Olympic in Compton Gonzales and through its founding members, it earned permission from the UCI to form the T&TCF.



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