The emergence of Selangor Criterium Series

It’s been a while since someone or something has tried doing something different when it comes to cycling in Malaysia. But just like a breath of fresh air when it was most needed, we are lucky to have Cycling Selangor. This is because this year, they have plans to revolutionise the way we participate in bicycle races. 

Before we get to that, let’s get to know Cycling Selangor a bit more because most of you out there will have probably heard about them but not know what they are all about. Cycling Selangor is an initiative founded by HH Tengku Amir Shah, the Crown Prince of Selangor. He has a non-profit youth organisation called SAY (Selangor Youth Community) which serves to provide a platform to unearth the next sporting champion in Selangor.

Cycling Selangor was born out of this organisation, and with it the increasingly popular Selangor Criterium Series (SCS). It was created to unify cycling platforms and to serve as a bridge between different cycling communities. In 2018 the inaugural year of SCS, Cycling Selangor hosted 1000 participants over 3 separate events. Much funfair was created around the Crits but most importantly it really did serve as a gap filler for the lack of proper amateur bicycle racing in Selangor.

This year instead of having only three races, Cycling Selangor ramped up its Crit Series and decided to have 7 races, which kicked off recently at the famous Sepang International Circuit (SIC). Called a Pre-Race feeler, it was held as the season-opener for the Selangor Criterium Series as well as to serve as an introduction to their new race format which promises to radically change races.

Instead of categorising racers by their age group like how most cycling events in Malaysia do, Cycling Selangor decided to group participants based on their “bike-ability”. This would allow riders to race according to their respective grades instead.

To be graded, all you need to do is visit an approved grading centre (there are 10 approved centres to date) and after some tests you get a certificate to determine your grade level. It will only cost you RM10 to be tested. This allows you to race in a group regardless of your age which can certainly spruce things up. Imagine an experienced 30 year old against an inexperienced 18 year old wild cat, who would come out on top?  Only a graded race can help solve that.

The recent pre-race event was not a proper graded race as it was based on some honest gentleman’s agreement on each individual’s admitted cycling stats. However, the message was conveyed and what an exciting night it was. Flagged off by SIC CEO, Dato Ahmad Razlan Razali, the night saw participation numbers doubling from any previous race series from 2018.

More than 100 riders were pitted together in the Cat C race, making it one of the more exciting races of the night. It was deemed as “one of the more balanced categories” with the breakaway leader group remaining together for much of the race, giving a good indication of the workability of the grading system. The Cat D race saw close to 150 riders go head to head against each other, ranging from juniors to senior levels. With a lot of new cycling clubs emerging and looking forward to the next one, the 2019 Selangor Criterium Series is set to be an exciting one indeed.

For more on the Crit Series, log on to www.cyclingselangor.com

*Pictures by Joy Saidin and Iqbal Mansor

TOP 3 Racers For Each Category

 

Men Elite

1. Muhammad Nurfitri Ammar B.  Rusli - Plogo Dr Dagoo

2. Sofian Nabil Omar B.  Mihd Bakri - Selangor Cycling Association

3. Muhammad Akmal Zaidi B.  Mohd Zaini

 

Men B

1. Mohd Razif b.  Mohd Salleh - Xircolo Cycling Team

2. Chiang Jia Cheng

3. Muhammad b.  Yusoff - AFG

Men C

1. Mohd Zukri B.  Tahir

2. Amenur Hakeem - BikeZone

3. Muhamad Izat Tolha - CMCC

 

Men D

1. Abid Syatiq - Forca Amskin

2. Mohd Raifiq

3. Muhd Zikri Asyraf - Bikezone

 

Women’s A

1. Yeong Zhen Yi - Pardus Cycling Team

2. Nurqadrina Emylia bt Norzali - Selangor Cycling Association

3. Nur Alya bt.  Mohd Azli - Selangor Cycling Association

Women’s B

1. Ummi Kalsom bt Abd Rahman

2. Noraini Bt.  Ibrahim - Speedzone

3. Tengku Nirwana - Nacho

 

Fixed Gear

1. Ahmad Al Bukhari   Ahmad Tajuddin - Yellow Bike Company

2. Syafiq b.  Rahmat - Yellow Bike Company

3. Muhammad Shafiq b.  Muslim - Mayhem