The Rivers State Cycling Association is working hard to put Nigeria’s cycling on the world map by 2016.
In order to achieve this desire, the association has intensified efforts towards ensuring that its programmes do not derail.
Speaking in an interactive session with Sports journalists in Port Harcourt at the weekend, chairman of the association, Alex Ndudi Enebeli said that their partnership with the Italian Cycling Federation has been yielding dividends and they intend to keep the pace.
He disclosed that two of the association’s cyclists Gloria Odiase and Preye Dede, sent to Italy for training had returned to Port Harcourt.
The Cyclists, he said were exposed to first class training, equipment and tacties and returned far more better and experienced than when they left the country.
The Italian trip, which is the first of many being planned in partnership with the Italian Cycling Federation is part of efforts to prepare Nigerian Cycling for a positive outing at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in four years time.
At the moment, the Rivers Cycling Association is already preparing for several championships and tournaments including the African Cycling Championships, next edition of the Niger Delta Cycling Championships, Garden City Cycling Championships, the 18th National Sports festival, Eko 2012 and the Olympic Games in 2016.
The chairman however, called for partnerships with the association to enable them realise set objectives.
“We’re working to keep Nigerian Cycling in the world’s map by 2016, we’re aiming for the top.
“But we need partnerships, we are open and willing to partner with orgnisations and corporate bodies to lift cycling in the country”, he said.
Also speaking, Vice chairman of the association, Chief Giandomenico Masari said that their efforts were beginning to yield results because they have a good team.
“The Nigerian Cycling Federation is involved in our efforts and partnership with their Italian counterparts. Our athletes went to Italy and have taken the first steps at this stage, exposure is very important,” said Masari.
He stated that the Project, ‘Nigerian Cycling For Rio 2016, is trying to ensure that a Nigerian team features at the Olympics in 2016, and that they would start by ensuring that our athletes get international exposure, begging from the continental championships.