Turkey Hosts Champion Malaysian Cyclists in Six International Grand Prix Races

Friday, 06-August-2021 19:08

The Terengganu Cycling Team (TSG) has set up a training camp in Turkey.
Image : special
The Terengganu Cycling Team (TSG) has set up a training camp in Turkey.

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Turkey, long known for its scenic beauty and diversity, its historical and cultural treasures, and its unique geographic location straddling two continents, is one of the world’s top-rated tourist destinations. What is not as well known is that Turkey is also a world-class cycling destination, both for amateur and professional competitions, as well as for cycling tourism.

As part of its efforts to promote cycling tourism in Turkey, the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Turkish Tourism Promotion and Development Agency (TGA) have recently launched the gocyclingturkiye.com website, for mountain bike, road bike and e-bike races, routes, and cycling events from all over Turkey.

Velo Erciyes, organizer of cycling training camps and races, conducted six GP competitions, each one a series of 1-day races categorized by the International Cycling Union as Level 1.2 in the European race calendar. Prize money are awarded for top placed riders.

The Terengganu Cycling Team (TSG) from Malaysia participated and won in these international cycling competitions. The races were by no means the only highlight to TSG's event-filled July in Turkey. Prior to the races, TSG had chosen Mount Erciyes as their training camp. The perpetually snow-covered volcanic mountain, with an elevation of 3,916 meters, looms over a magnificent scenic landscape studded with imposing geological formations called "fairy chimneys," which formed over tens of thousands of years.

The team trained in this land of fairy tales, Cappadocia, where the Turkish Embassy's Tourism and Information Office, in collaboration with the Turkish Tourism Promotion and Development Agency (TGA), arranged a day trip for the TSG cyclists to visit some of this tourist destination’s popular sites.

From July 3rd to 18th, TSG squared off against 20 other teams from Turkey, Europe, and North America in six events: the Germenica Grand Prix, Kahramanmaras Grand Prix, Erclyes Grand Prix, Kayseri Grand Prix, Velo Erciyes Grand Prix, and the Develi Grand Prix.

TSG's 8-member team made a commendable showing, reaching the podium in all six outings. Their crowning event was the Kahramanmaras Grand Prix on July 4th, where two TSG riders took first and second place: Jambaljamts Sainbayar was named "Champion," while teammate Metkel Eyob won second place.

Afterwards, Wan Mohd Nazri Wan Ahmad, TSG's sporting director, remarked: "The roads here are perfect for our riders, and the hospitality of the locals deserves to be credited. We felt at home during our visit to Turkey," he said.

Another team member, Jeroen Meijers, said: "We came to Turkey and saw that it is a true cycling heaven. The roads and the infrastructure are top class, and we enjoyed the nature, climate and scenery."

Indeed, many cyclists and cycling teams prefer to train and to race in Turkey, citing its recently implemented "Safe Tourism Certification" program. This comprises a set of protocols and guidelines established by the Turkish government, certifying safe tourism practices for all foreign and domestic guests, and covering the entire length of their stay.

Turkey's two premier cycling events are the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey, held in April of each year, and the Antalya Cycling Tour in February.

Reporter : turkhan
Editor : turkhan