While most people have taken up cycling as a hobby or sport to stay fit and healthy, Team Jonmol Cycling Club utilises the sport to raise funds for the needy. The Ramotswa based team, which is affiliated to Botswana Cycling Association (BCA) will on April 17th host the second instalment of the Neelano Cycling Challenge. This year’s charity race is aimed at raising funds to assist the club’s development team.
David Lebalelo, one of the organisers of the Neelano Cycling Challenge said in an interview that the funds will be used to purchase cycling equipment for most of the club’s development cyclists.
“Because cycling is an expensive sport, most of the youngsters in our club are from families that cannot afford to buy cycling equipment. We will use proceeds from the challenge to buy equipment for them,” he said.
He added that proceeds from last year’s race were used to buy toiletry and a washing machine for Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre in Tlokweng. The race will start on the 17th of April at Airport Junction Mall. It will be open to cyclists from all cycling clubs in the country including corporate teams. Also invited to participate are cyclists from neighbouring countries such as Swaziland, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia. Eligible participants will pay P1, 500 for a team of four, P200 for individuals in the 104km race, P180 for the 60km race and P160 for the 30km race.
“This is the second event from last year’s. A lot has changed because we did not have corporate teams competing last year. To make it even more interesting we are going to have a mountain bike prize,” said Lebalelo.
He further said competition will be tougher this year as cyclists have been training during the festive season. Lebalelo also warned those who will be participating to look out for the club’s three female cyclists, Bakang Ebudilwe, Bonno Motlhetlhi and Promise Ntshese who are currently training at a high performance centre in South Africa. Some of the top cyclists to look out for include Abeng Malete, James Masimo, Lulu Telekelo, Sethomo Masepe, Kyle Poppleton, Shwan Bruwer, Sean McCormick and Mark Colley. “Also the Swazi teams, MTN Khemani and Dups are going to give our local guys a run for their money,” Lebalelo added.
The second annual Neelano Challenge is sponsored by Capital Bank.
“As long as you a capable of riding, you can come along. Registration is ongoing at the Bike Shop and Ultimate Cycle Base. Remember it’s a no-helmet-no-ride event. Safety first,” concluded Lebalelo.