LESOTHO has moved one place up to number 26 on the latest Union of International Circling (UCI) after the recent Mountain Bike World Championships in Cairns, Australia from 5 to 10 September 2017.
Lesotho was represented by Ramohanoe Ramohanoe in the junior men’s category, Tumelo Makae (under 23) and Phetetso Monese (elite men’s category).
Monese and Makae finished on position 64 out of 75 riders while Ramohanoe crashed out after just two laps.
Lesotho however, remain the second in Africa behind South Africa.
Team coach Mark West expressed satisfaction with his riders’ performance at their first ever world championships outside Africa.
“I am extremely proud of this team as this was their first world championship outside Africa and their first since the 2013 championships in South Africa,” West said, adding, “this was one of the toughest routes in the world and that was a promising performance from them”.
“Our objectives were to work towards qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and prepare for next year’s Gold Coast Commonwealth Games (in Australia). We also wanted to help Ramohanoe to qualify for the Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games next year and to maintain our world UCI rankings.”
He said the exposure would come in handy for his riders in future races.
“This was one of the toughest races due to the track and even though they didn’t win, I hope the exposure will help them going forward. Ramohanoe will have to ride again in order to qualify for the Youth Olympics.”
The rider’s trip was sponsored by Alliance Insurance and the Lesotho National Olympic Committee to the tune of M80 000 and M41 000 respectively.
Alliance Insurance representative, Maki Mokobocho, congratulated the team and pledged to support them until the 2020 Olympics.
“Cycling is one of the few sports where we are really doing well as a country so Alliance is happy to be associated with that.
“We also thank Ntate Mark for the passion he has shown in helping this sport grow. To you cyclists, I say keep your heads up and take what you learnt from this race and use it going forward. We are very proud of you and we pledge to support you until the 2020 Olympics dream is achieved,” Mokobocho said.