Rwanda Cycling Federation (FERWACY) has released a list of 15 riders who will compete as the country flag bearers when the 9th edition of Tour du Rwanda gets underway from November 12-19.
The cyclists were confirmed after last weekend’s races which were organised to prepare for the UCI-Africa Tour 2.2 road race.
The races, from Nyanza-Rubavu and Rubavu-Musanze, were organised by FERWACY as a final warm-up aimed at giving the cyclists experience on the two routes that will be among seven stages of Tour du Rwanda.
Dimension Data Club rider Samuel Mugisha, 19, won the race from Nyanza District to Rubavu District after clocking 4h 40′ 58″‘ in 180km while Benediction Club rider Patrick Byukusenge won the Rubavu-Musanze leg after clocking 2h37’95.”
However, the 15 riders will be divided into three teams of five each: Team Rwanda (national team), Les Amis Sportifs, and Benediction.
The country’s most exciting sporting event of the year will cover all the five regions of the country namely Eastern, Western, Northern, and Southern provinces, and City of Kigali.
The Tour du Rwanda has a total of seven stages besides the opening prologue which will cover a total distance of 819 kilometres, almost the same distance as last year’s that covered 819.km.
“The organisation and preparations for the race are fine, everything is in place and we hope to have a better event than previous years. We prepared riders and we are in the final stage of the preparations,” the president of Rwanda Cycling Federation, Aimable Bayingana, said.
In total, Rwanda will have eighteen riders, including Samuel Mugisha and Joseph Areruya, who will be riding for Dimension Data of South Africa, while Valens Ndayisenga will be with his new Austria UCI continental team of Tirol Cycling Team.
This year’s budget will fall between Rwf400m and Rwf460m. Rwanda’s Valens Ndayisenga, currently with Austria’s Tirol Cycling Team, is the reigning champion, while Jean Bosco Nsengimana won the 2015 Tour du Rwanda edition.
The four-time record stage winner of Tour du Rwanda is the only rider to have won the annual event twice (2014 and 2016) since it became part of UCI Africa Tour in 2009.
Rwanda won the last three Tour du Rwanda editions. In 2014, Ndayisenga became the first Rwandan rider to win the Tour du Rwanda since its incorporation into the UCI Africa calendar in 2009.
Source ;The new times