Rwanda Cycling Federation has selected three Team Rwanda riders to compete in a Mt. Bike race scheduled to run from March 17 -24 in South Africa.
The trio includes experienced riders Nathan Byukusenge, Jean de Dieu Uwimana “Rafiki” and Hassan Rukundo. The race will cover 698 km in 9 stages.
Rwanda is not a renowned Mountain Bike country, but according to RCF Permanent Secretary Emmanuel Murenzi, the three riders, who are used to road racing, will be able to adapt to the format.
“It’s not the kind of format our riders are used but we hope they will be able to adapt well. We need to use many young riders in big competitions, that is why we choose Rukundo, along with the other two who are more experienced to guide him,” Murenzi said on Friday.
Only South Africa-based Adrien Niyonshuti, who participated in the 2012 London Olympic Games (Mt. Bike), the only black, has enough experience in this format of racing. However, he will not be on the team after being ruled out of action for the rest of the season with a blood clot.
The event will attract 1200 riders, 100 from Europe, Last year winners were South Africa’s Christophe Sauser and Burry Stander.