Wednesday, February 23, 2011

UCI World Cup 2011 - Azizulhasni Awang Splinter

Cycling: Bumpy ride in store for riders

Arnaz M. Khairul

THE Pelapis programme has no choice but to make do with the dangerous timber track at Velodrom Rakyat in Ipoh but hopes safety at the facility is improved soon.

Currently, the Pelapis Academy has about 30 cyclists based in Ipoh and training at Velodrom Rakyat under constant fear for their safety, but this is something National Sports Council (NSC) Pelapis unit head Jeffri Ngadirin said that couldn't be helped.

"Of course the state of the timber track is bad. But we can't help it. All we can do is have the coaches advise their riders to be careful when using the track," said Jeffri, when contacted yesterday.

A number of junior cyclists have had wood splinters embedded in their bodies following crashes at Velodrom Rakyat and Timesport's checks at the track on Monday found it to be in a dangerous state with splinters sticking out in many areas around the 250-metre track.

This issue surfaced following national rider Azizul Hasni Awang's horrific crash in the keirin final at the UCI World Cup in Manchester on Sunday where a nine-inch wood splinter pierced his left calf. While that was a freak accident, local coaches called for attention to Velodrom Rakyat, where having splinters in their bodies is a norm for cyclists who crash there.

"Coaches have voiced their fears over the dangers of the track and we are aware of it. On our part, together with the Perak Sports Council, we use whatever small budgets available to make our own repairs to the track, to touch it up here and there," said Jeffri.

"We've also been informed that the Perak Sports Council has been planning for repairs with the Ipoh City Hall (DBI), but we don't know when this will commence."

Asked whether the Pelapis unit will consider moving its trainees to the Kuala Lumpur Velodrome to ensure safety, Jeffri said that was out of the question.

"There are many factors to be considered, like the transfer of schools for the riders, and logistics. We have the facility there (in Ipoh), so it would be a waste not to use it. And the programme at Velodrom Rakyat has already come up with products, so it should be maintained. For the Kuala Lumpur Velodrome, we should have another such programme running there soon."

The last time the track was repaired in 2006, Perak Cycling Association president Tan Sri Darshan Singh Gill was officially quoted as estimating the cost to be at RM1.7 million.

Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) technical and competitions committee chairman Maniam Manikkam said on Monday that the federation will be making an inspection of the track prior to junior competitions planned this year, following previous complaints from technical officials about its safety.

He said the MNCF will not hesitate to suspend any activity at the track should it be found to be unsafe.

Maniam also said the MNCF will recommend to the DBI that Velodrom Rakyat's timber track be replaced with a cement one to make it more cost effective and sustainable under local weather conditions.

Cycling: Woes of Velodrom Rakyat

The 25-year-old Velodrom Rakyat has been hit with never-ending woes despite numerous attempts to restore the track. — Picture by Muhaizan Yahya
AZIZUL Hasni Awang's horrific injury on the Siberian timber track at the velodrome in Manchester must now open the eyes to dangers in our own backyard.

Coaches of junior teams in the country and a number of cycling officials have raised the alarm over the state of the timber track at Velodrom Rakyat in Ipoh, the ill-fated 25-year-old facility that seems hit with never-ending woes despite numerous attempts to restore the track.

Question marks were raised when the academy, based at Velodrom Rakyat, was left in a limbo two months ago when coach Mahazir Hamad left the programme to take charge of the development squad in his home state Selangor.

It was by all means a demotion for Mahazir, a celebrated former national cyclists, but despite reserving his comments, hinted that all was not right at Velodrom Rakyat.

The Malaysian National Cycling Federation (MNCF) has once before, in 2005, suspended the use of Velodrom Rakyat after serious crashes suffered by cyclists in the ACC Track Asia Cup round as it hosted as its first event after supposed repairs were completed.

The velodrome had been left in a dilapidated state between 2000 and 2004, when a Timesport expose saw to it that the track would be repaired. At a cost of RM1.7 million from the Ipoh City Hall's (DBI) coffers, a return to action was promised, but Hafiz Sufian's unwanted souvenirs from the ACC Track Asia Cup showed repairs too weren't enough.

National cyclist Hafiz had crashed and had wood splinters stuck into his thigh, arms and back, some of which had to be surgically removed. That was in 2005.

Azizul's former coach Rozimi Omar, in charge of junior cyclists under the Dungun District Cycling Association (DDCA) has voiced his concern over the matter.

"When we have races at Velodrom Rakyat, I'm always worried, as we have junior cyclists under our care. Azizul's incident in Manchester was a freak accident, which was not expected to happen," said Rozimi.

"But at Velodrom Rakyat, a crash will almost certainly leave some wood splinters stuck into the bodies of cyclists. And with junior cyclists, we coaches will have to be responsible and often answerable to parents.

"I hope this matter will be viewed seriously."

MNCF technical and competitions committee chairman Maniam Manikkam said the federation was aware of the state of Velodrom Rakyat, but admitted there were still junior competitions planned at the facility for this year.

"We have included some rounds of the junior circuit to be held at Velodrom Rakyat, but before they are run this year I will be going to have a look at the track," said Maniam when contacted.

"We have received a number of verbal complaints, mostly from those worrying about the safety of riders. Should we find the track unsafe, we will not hesitate to suspend it from use again."

Maniam said there had also been recommendation for the track, which has often been criticised for being unsuitable as an outdoor facility with a timber track, to be converted into a cement track which could be the right solution to the problem.

"The MNCF track committee has suggested this to the owner, DBI, before. Maybe it is time to really push for this. There has been talk about building new velodromes, but we must first prove that we can take care of the existing ones," said Maniam

Read more: Cycling: Woes of Velodrom Rakyat

Monday, February 21, 2011

Beasley undur diri?

on Monday, February 21, 2011 at 9:16pm
KORAT, Thailand - Jika benar apa yang dikata, ketua jurulatih, John Beasley tidak lagi akan membimbing skuad lumba basikal trek negara selepas berakhirnya temasya Sukan Olimpik 2012 di London.

Difahamkan, jurulatih kelahiran Australia itu telah memaklumkan mengenai hasratnya untuk mengundur diri daripada membimbing skuad trek negara kepada Majlis Sukan Negara (MSN).

Menurut sumber, Beasley dilapor mahu mencari 'angin baru' selepas temasya Olimpik 2012 dan dia juga dikatakan mendapat tawaran untuk melatih skuad kebangsaan Iran - antara negara yang mula memperlihatkan peningkatan mendadak dalam acara trek.

"Beasley telah memaklumkan kepada MSN bahawa dia mahu berhijrah ke pasukan lain. MSN mungkin terpaksa menerima hasrat Beasley itu kerana dia menang mahu membimbing pasukan baru selepas melatih pelumba-pelumba trek negara sejak empat tahun lalu.

"Jika Beasley benar-benar meninggalkan skuad trek negara, MSN perlu bertindak lebih awal bagi mencari pengganti yang sesuai bagi menggantikan tempatnya. Kita tidak mahu prestasi pelumba-pelumba trek elit yang ada sekarang menghadapi masalah jika Beasley melepaskan tugasnya nanti," kata sumber tersebut.

Beasley yang mula membimbing skuad trek negara pada 2006 dilihat telah berjaya menjulang nama Malaysia di peta dunia dengan lahirnya beberapa jaguh seperti Mohd. Azizulhasni Awang, Mohd. Rizal Tisin dan Fatehah Mustapa.

"Kemampuan Beasley melahirkan jaguh dunia menyebabkan dia memiliki reputasi tinggi sebagai seorang jurulatih trek yang hebat.

"Ketika dia memulakan tugas membimbing skuad trek negara, memang kita tidak dapat hasilnya tetapi tiga tahun kemudian, kita sudah lihat ada perubahan dengan lahirnya jaguh keirin negara, Azizulhasni.

"Kesatuan Berbasikal Antarabangsa (UCI) juga mengakui Beasley sebagai antara jurulatih terbaik di dunia. UCI juga kini menganggap Malaysia sebagai antara negara kuasa besar dalam acara trek.

"Jadi tidak mengejutkan jika Beasley mendapat tawaran daripada beberapa negara yang berminat untuk menggunakan kepakarannya," tambah sumber itu lagi.

Ketika MSN menawarkan kontrak baru kepada Beasley dua tahun lalu, jurulatih yang diperkenalkan oleh pelumba negara, Josiah Ng itu dilapor telah dipancing oleh beberapa negara termasuk China dan Iran.

Bagaimanapun, Beasley tetap dengan keputusannya untuk meneruskan khidmatnya membimbing barisan pelumba trek negara.

"Jika kali ini, Beasley sudah tidak mahu menyambung kontrak untuk membimbing skuad trek negara, kita sudah tidak boleh buat apa-apa lagi. Semua ini (pertukaran jurulatih) adalah lumrah dalam dunia sukan termasuk basikal.

"Setakat ini, kita belum ada calon yang sesuai untuk menggantikan tempat Beasley. Namun, satu persoalan lagi, jika kita mendapat pengganti yang sesuai, adakah kita bersetuju pula dengan soal pembayaran gaji.

"Semua ini harus diteliti dengan sebaik-baiknya agar semua pihak dapat manfaat bersama," katanya.!/notes/persekutuan-kebangsaan-berbasikal-malaysia/beasley-undur-diri/10150105997957829

Cycling: Azizul retains crown amid horror show

Malaysia’s Josiah Ng (top) and Germany’s Rene Enders crash in the keirin semi-final in Manchester yesterday. — AFP picture

AZIZUL Hasni Awang stole the show at the track World Cup with his heroics in Manchester, England, on Saturday.

Despite a crash involving four riders resulting in his leg being pierced by a wood splinter, Azizul managed to get back on his bike and stagger across the line.

The crash involved Azizul, Poland's Kamil Kuczynski, Edward Dawkins of New Zealand and Juan Peralta Gascon of Spain.

Azizul got back on his bike, while Dawkins pushed his over the line. Peralta ran to the finish line without his bike and was disqualified.

Azizul managed to bag the bronze medal, which was enough to retain his overall World Cup keirin title.

Azizul was promoted to third after Peralta was disqualified. But he missed his moment on the podium because he was on his way to hospital.

Britain's Chris Hoy, who won the gold, was one of only two riders who completed the race without crashing. Azizul pipped Hoy to the keirin series title that covers the four meetings that constitute the track World Cup.

National track team manager Datuk Naim Mohamad, who was with Azizul at the Royal Infirmary in Manchester, said Azizul was awaiting a scan yesterday morning before doctors determined the best way to remove the wood splinter from his leg.

"They have to do the scan to find out if the splinter pierced any veins or arteries, which could complicate things. The specialists say if all is well, Azizul will recover within a week."

"This just showed what a fighter Azizul is.

"You look at the splinter sticking out of his leg like that and you can't imagine how he managed to ride on and win the bronze medal."

Arnaz M. Khairul

'Pahlawan Manchester'

SERPIHAN kayu tujuh inci daripada trek tertusuk di betis kiri Azizulhasni dalam perlumbaan di Manchester awal pagi, semalam.

: Azizulhasni wira tulen, habis pecutan dalam kesakitan

AZIZULHASNI Awang sudah lama ada ‘sifat pahlawan’ dalam dirinya - mahu menang dengan apa cara sekali pun - jika ada ruang memecut dan awal pagi semalam gelagat itu hampir membawa padah pada diri jaguh trek negara itu.

Anak muda dari Terengganu itu terbabit dengan pelanggaran teruk membabitkan tiga pelumba lain dalam final acara keirin di Kejohanan Trek Siri Piala Dunia di Manchester yang berakhir dengan serpihan kayu tujuh inci daripada trek tertusuk di betis kirinya, semalam.

Sekalipun terjatuh, dia tetap bangun mengayuh ke garisan penamat dan hanya sedar kesakitan itu selepas menamatkan perlumbaan sebelum dibawa ke hospital dan tidak dapat naik ke podium untuk menerima pingat gangsa.

Emas dimenangi juara Olimpik dan pencabar sengitnya dari Britain, Chris Hoy yang tidak terbabit dalam pelanggaran itu. Apapun, penawar duka adalah Azizulhasni muncul juara keseluruhan siri Piala Dunia acara berkenaan kali ini.

Semalam, jaguh pecut trek negara itu selamat menjalani pembedahan dan menurut Timbalan Presiden Persekutuan Kebangsaan Berbasikal Malaysia (MNCF) tiada kecederaan serius melanda ikon sukan negara itu.

“Dia bernasib baik kerana serpihan kayu itu tidak terkena salur darah utama, tisu dan otot betisnya,” katanya.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Kayuhan Mereka,Tuai Emas

Salam sejahtera kepada semua keluarga berbasikal negara Malaysia yang masih menanti perkembangan atau perjalanan hala tuju berbasikal negara malaysia yang mana kita sedia maklum pelumba negara baru sahaja terlibat menyertai perlumbaan Asian Cycling Championship di Korat Thailand dengan keputusan dua emas, tujuh perak dan lima gangsa telah memperbaiki kutipan pingat berbanding tahun yang lalu.

Walaupun tidak terlibat membantu pasukan lebuhraya elit lelaki oleh kerana beberapa masalah tertentu, saya sebagai wakil kepada keluarga berbasikal menguncapkan sekalung tahniah di atas kejayaan wira negara yang bertanding.

Perkembangan ini dilihat sebagai satu platform di mana pelumba trek negara telah pun bersedia bagi mengalas cabaran di masa hadapan lebih-lebih lagi kepada pelumba pelapis kebangsaan yang konsisten dan masih memerlukan perhatian yang rapi agar prestasi tidak terganggu seperti yang di tonjolkan oleh sebilangan mereka sejak kebelakangan ini. Ini harus seperti membaja benih untuk melihat hasil bila ia menjadi pokok yang telah matang.

Usaha ini perlu di teruskan agar kekuatan ini terus kekal dengan bantuan dan saluran bagi membantu mereka sebaris kepada pelumba elit ketika ini.

Di harap keputusan yang di cipta perlu di gilap lagi dan harus di analisis sebaik mungkin bagi memastikan catatan lebih pantas di masa hadapan. Bagi tahun ini saya bercadang akan turun beberapa tapak kebelakang bagi membantu generasi saya agar pelumba lebih bersedia yang di kehendaki oleh kita semua dan berbasikal Negara Malaysia. Bantu saya untuk bantu mereka. Selamat Maju Jaya!