Elite men (116km)
1. Moise Mugisha 3:17:57
2.Gasore Hategeka 3:19:37
3. Eric Manizabayo 3:21:34
4. Seth Hakizimana 3:21:35
5. Mathieu Twizerane 3:21:37
9. Patrick Byukusenge 3:24:47
1. Renus Byiza Uhiriwe 2:48:03
2. Jean Claude Nzafashwanayo 2:48:05
3. Jean Eric Habimana 2:48:08
1. Diane Ingabire 2:40:00
2. Valentine Nzayisenga 2:41:00
3. Genevieve Mukundente 2:42:03
Patrick Byukusenge was the big favourite to win Karongi Challenge on Sunday but the reigning Rwanda Cycling Cup winner could only finish ninth behind solo winner Moise Mugisha
It was the rider’s first triumph in Rwanda Cycling Cup since its inception in 2015.
The undulating parcours from Rubengera to Karongi District, in addition to a 20-lap in Karongi town, set up the potential for a big breakaway, but, it never materialised.
Fly Cycling Club’s Mugisha dominated the one-day 116km race to claim the title in 3 hours 17 minutes and 47 seconds, a whopping one minute and 40 seconds ahead of first runner-up Gasore Hategeka. The latter plies his trade with Nyabihu Cycling Club.
“This victory is a result of team effort rather than individual brilliance, we organised ourselves in a way that favoured one of us to win and thankfully I worked hard. This is a big moment for me, it’s my first win in Rwanda Cycling Cup but it’s absolutely not my last,” Mugisha said.
Renus Byiza Uhiriwe, who rides for Muhazi Cycling Generation, scooped the top prize in the 92km juniors category in 2 hours 48 minutes and 3 seconds, while Diane Ingabire of Benediction Club clocked 2 hours and 48 minutes to clinch the women’s 76km race.
The race lacked some of the country’s star cyclists in men’s elite and U23 category such as the Benediction Club trio of Jean Bosco Nsengimana, Janvier Hadi and Bonaventure Uwizeyimana as well as Jean Paul Rene Ukiniwabo of Les Amis Sportifs de Rwamagana.
After Karongi Challenge, the fourth edition of Rwanda Cycling Cup remains with only two legs; the Central Challenge that is set for November 10, from Kigali to Muhanga through Musanze, and season-ending Final Race, in Kigali on December 15.
Of the 29 riders who started the race in the men’s elite category, only 13 managed to finish – registering 16 abandons, including the reigning national champion, Didier Munyaneza.