THE Philcycling National Championships for MTB to be held on Sunday in Danao City, Cebu has drawn a high turnout of participants from all over the country.
The event for mountain bikers will serve as the first-ever race organized by the national cycling federation since the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the trials for the national team that will compete in the 2021 Southeast Asian Games.
Although the official numbers have come in, the XCO (cross country) competition will see a record field that will compete in different events including the juniors and the elite.
Philcycling vice president and MTB commission chairman Oscar ‘Boying’ Rodriguez attributed the turnout to the thirst for competition as well as the increased interest for the sport during the pandemic.
“Siguro one year tayong naka-lockdown tapos walang transportation, halos lahat ng tao, nagbibisikleta,” said Rodriguez during Tuesday’s Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum.
“Ngayon nga, wala kang mabiling bisikleta sa mga bike shop. ‘Yan siguro dahilan bakit ganun karami ang nagbibisikleta,” he added.
National coach Eboy Quinones said the competition drew cyclists from different parts of the country.
“Nagulat kami dahil nagdaan ang pandemic tapos napakaraming bikers,” said Quinones. “Sa elite na sasali ngayon, almost 40 ang sasali. ‘Yung previous sa amin, ang sumasali lang, mga 10. Ngayon, sobrang dami.”
“Ang dumayo na galing sa Manila, almost 35 sila. Sa juniors, napakarami. Sa youth, mga galing Bulacan, may Cavite, may Las Piñas, may La Union, may mga from Bicol,” said the former SEA Games gold medalist.
The event will be following strict health protocols by the government for the safety of the participants.
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