Omuthiya Cycling club aims for Olympics … lack of proper facilities hampers progress
Obrein Simasiku Omuthiya-The fast-growing Omuthiya-based BMX club aims to produce top cyclists to represent Namibia at international level in the not-too-distant future. Those were the words of head coach Salomo Ndeshimona as he highlighted the club’s recent achievements at the National Cyclist Race in Windhoek over the past weekend, which saw their cyclists scoop two gold and one bronze medal. The club, which has been in existence for nearly three years now made its second appearance at the national championship represented by a pool of ten cyclists. “We are striving to produce top local cyclists that can represent this country at the highest level with the Olympics our primary target. Of course, we understand we are still a young baby and still have a long way ahead of us, notably with regard to challenges we are faced with now,” Ndeshimona noted. He described their performance at last weekend’s race as satisfactory, but was nevertheless quick to stress that he has noted his cyclists encountered major setbacks, such as the racetrack, which was composed of grass compared to their training ground in Omuthiya, which is sand and gravel. As a result of lack of availability of sufficient training ground, the club has been using the town’s recreational park for preparations ahead of major cycling events. ‘We are still struggling to secure a piece of land where we can set up a training track. Potential donors cannot come on board because we don’t have proper facilities. For instance, we had a Good Samaritan who promised to donate a container where we could store and repair our bicycles, but could not do so because there is no land available.” This has prompted Ndeshimona to turn himself into a bicycle mechanic, despite being inappropriately qualified to execute such functions. “We don’t have a choice. My other colleague, Petrus Petrus, does the coaching and I do the repairs when a bicycle becomes dysfunctional on the training ground,” said the retired cyclist, who is the holder of an international coaching certificate. He also cautioned drivers to be on the lookout for cyclists, especially in Omuthiya and to take precautions when approaching and to desist from shouting at and or insulting cyclists, as this distracts them and can lead to an accident. The club operates with only eight BMX bicycles donated by the National Cycling Federation (NCF) through RMB.
New Era Reporter
2017-09-19 10:34:16 2 years ago