Rwanda’s fast-rising cyclists Joseph Areruya and Samuel Mugisha have signed one-year contract extensions each with South African-based Continental Team, Dimension Data for Qhubeka.
The duo joined the two-time Tour du Rwanda winning team (2016 and 2017) after impressing during last year’s edition to replace their compatriot Bonaventure Uwizeyimana, and the two-time Tour du Rwanda champion Valens Ndayisenga.
Areruya, winner of this year’s Tour du Rwanda, and Mugisha’s contracts were supposed to expire in January but Dimension Data for Qhubeka decided to remain with them for another year.
Twenty-one-year-old Areruya won the eight-day, seven-stage Tour du Rwanda 2017 edition that covered 819 kilometres, having used a total of 20 hours, 21 minutes and 29 seconds.
By win this year’s edition, he became the third Rwandan to win Tour du Rwanda after Valens Ndayisenga (2014 and 2016) and Jean Bosco Nsengimana, who won it in 2015.
It was reported that Israel Cycling Academy and SkyDive Dubai Pro Cycling Team wanted to sign Areruya but he opted to remain in South Africa.
Nineteen-year-old Mugisha, who shot to fame at the 2016 edition of Tour du Rwanda following his victory in the King of the Mountains race category, finished in 24th place overall this year.
In October, Mugisha won the longest race of the 2017 Rwanda Cycling Cup: 180-kilometres from Nyanza to Rubavu.
Dimension Data for Qhubeka also retained Stefan DE Bod and Kent Main (both South Africans) but released Eritrean Eyob Mektel, who turned 24.