Cyclists Ndayisenga, Girubuntu vow to defend their titles in Egypt

Following their perfect start to the ongoing 2017 African Continental Championships in Luxor, Egypt, Team Rwanda will have a chance to add on their bronze medal when the trio of Valens Ndayisenga, Joseph Areruya (men) and Jeanne d’ Arc Girubuntu (female) hit the road in the Individual Time Trials.
Jeanne dArc Girubuntu (L) and Valens Ndayisenga pose with their medals on arrival at Kigali International Airport last year.  (File)
Jeanne dArc Girubuntu (L) and Valens Ndayisenga pose with their medals on arrival at Kigali International Airport last year. (File)

Today                                            

Elite women Individual Time Trial 9am

Elite Men & U23 Individual Time Trial 11am

Following their perfect start to the ongoing 2017 African Continental Championships in Luxor, Egypt, Team Rwanda will have a chance to add on their bronze medal when the trio of Valens Ndayisenga, Joseph Areruya (men) and Jeanne d’ Arc Girubuntu (female) hit the road in the Individual Time Trials.

The annual event started on February 13 and will run until February 19.           

On Tuesday, Team Rwanda, through the quartet of Valens Ndayisenga, Jean Bosco Nsengimana, Samuel Mugisha and Joseph Areruya, put on a spectacular performance in the Elite Men Team Time Trial to scoop a bronze medal after finishing third behind gold winners Eritrea and Silver medalists Algeria.

This was Rwanda’s first ever team medal at this annual event and the second in local cycling history after the 2015 bronze at the All African Games in road race.

Today, Team Rwanda will have another opportunity to get silverware with the duo of Ndayisenga and the only female rider on the team Girubuntu who won medals in this particular category last year in Casablanca, Morocco looking to retain their titles.

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Jeanne d’ Arc Girubuntu  during the 2018 Rwanda Cycling Cup. She won a silver medal in Morocco last year. (Sam Ngendahimana)

Girubuntu will peddle off first with his 25.8kilomtres race scheduled to kickoff at 9am local time.

Last year, Girubuntu claimed silver in the women individual time trial, becoming the first Rwandan woman to win a medal at that level.

“Our riders are well prepared to do more than the bronze medal and I believe we can expect another medal today,” said Team Rwanda head coach Sterling Magnell

In men’s category, defending champion in the U23 ITT Ndayisenga will bond with Areruya for 41.8kilomtre distance hoping to retain his title while his compatriot Areruya will be aiming to win his first continental medal. The race starts at 11 am

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Ndayisenga will be looking to defend his gold medal he won last year in Morocco. (Sam Ngedahimana)

In the previous edition, Ndayisenga improved on his bronze-medal performance in 2015 to win gold. This was Rwanda’s first gold medal in the competition.

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