Windhoek, Jan 27- Nedbank Namibia has announced that the country’s biggest cycling race, the Nedbank Cycle Challenge, has been postponed. The race was slated for 14 and 21 February 2021.
“The Nedbank Cycle Challenge is considered our country’s oldest competitive cycling race, and can trace its existence back to 1986,” says Nedbank Namibia’s spokesperson, Gernot de Klerk. “Jointly, the Nedbank Kidz Challenge, the Nedbank MTB Challenge and the Nedbank Road Race Challenge attract close to 2,000 cyclists, and while the decision to postpone has been a wrenching one to make, we do believe it is a prudent resolution, given our wish to be supportive of our current health regulations.”
De Klerk says a decision on rescheduled dates will be made as soon as health regulations allow. “We are mindful of the fact that the cycling calendar is quite congested, but have dates set aside for races in both the Nedbank/Windhoek Pedal Power Road Race Series and the Nedbank/Rock & Rut Cross-Country (XC) Series later in the year, which could serve to host a rescheduled Nedbank Cycle Challenge.”
The Nedbank spokesperson expressed their gratitude towards cycling stakeholders, who, he says, have been supportive of the decision to postpone. “Our generous co-sponsors, NHP and Coca-Cola, deserve our praise for their continued support, while the guidance of the Namibia Sports Commission and the Namibian Cycling Federation has been immensely helpful throughout our various engagements with them.”
The Chief Administrator of the Namibia Sports Commission, Freddy Mwiya, says the NSC supports the organisers’ decision to postpone the event. “We have had extensive consultations with Nedbank Namibia, particularly related to the excellent cycling races that they host, as well as their generous support towards the development of cycling in our country”, he said. “We have also seen their diligence in adhering to the guidelines governing sporting activities at the past weekend’s Nedbank/WPP 1 race in Swakopmund, but an event of the magnitude of the Nedbank Cycle Challenge does require a vastly different approach in ensuring social distancing”.
The President of the Namibian Cycling Federation, Axel Theissen, says the NCF has full understanding for the decision to postpone the Nedbank Cycle Challenge. “Nedbank Namibia deserve praise for their prudent approach to hosting the event. Our cyclists do need competitive races of this quality to continue honing their talent and skill, but not at any risk to their health or preparation for international races.”