Pedal away

  • By Hindu
  • | Tuesday | 13th February, 2018

Every year the MVS Cycling Carnival brings together an eclectic mix of people united by a common love for cycling. The new mixed race category in the cycling carnival gave them an opportunity to participate as a team and they finished second. The only time Singh rides in the plains is when racing at the MVS Cycling Carnival. CATHERINE KINGA British national who spends most of the year in Thiruvananathapuram, Catherine King was the surprise winner in the Women’s Masters category (above 35 years). This year also saw a new mixed category for men and women above 25 years, especially meant for recreational riders.


Every year the MVS Cycling Carnival brings together an eclectic mix of people united by a common love for cycling. From veterans who are not ready to give up to the six year old who crossed the finished line in style with no hands on the handlebars, everyone had a field day at the Kari Motor Speedway last Sunday.

The MTB racing event was held on Saturday at multiple venues and the Criterium on Sunday at the Kari Speedway. This year, the organisers had to introduce new categories in the Criterium, especially the kid’s age group, to accommodate all the participants. This year also saw a new mixed category for men and women above 25 years, especially meant for recreational riders.

Here is a look at some of the truly inspirational riders.

ABIRAMI SUDAR

Chennai-based Abirami Sudar is the mother of two young children and took to cycling only in 2015. “I used to rent a cycle and ride on the ECR once in a while. Since June 2017, I have been training under a coach and ride four days a week. I am a hands-on mom but I have learnt to accommodate my training into my schedule. Training gives me the confidence to participate in races and push myself,” she said after finishing first in her race category. At 34, Sudar is a state-level champion and was the oldest rider to participate in the National meet last year. This Sunday, on the race track, she proved to be tough competition for the young girls and emerged first in the open women’s category.

CATHERINE KING

A British national who spends most of the year in Thiruvananathapuram, Catherine King was the surprise winner in the Women’s Masters category (above 35 years). King seems to have surprised herself as she said that she had been training for just over a week. “I am a certified physical trainer and I have been practicing Ashtanga Yoga for many years. But I consider myself a continuing student,” said King attributing her high level of fitness to her regimented lifestyle. She is also a certified Emmett Therapist.

DANALAKSHMI GOVINDRAJANN and VIJAY RAJENDRAN

Danalakshmi Govindarajan and Vijay Rajendran are an energetic couple who take participated in track and field events in the district and state-level masters meets recently. The new mixed race category in the cycling carnival gave them an opportunity to participate as a team and they finished second. “As a couple we like to support and challenge each other. It is also inspiring to see the level of fitness and competition from the other participants who motivate us further,” said Govindarajan.

RAMNEEK SINGH

At 51, Ramneek Singh lives an active lifestyle in Coonoor. A regular golfer he takes a spin on his bicycle at least twice a week: once on a hsort ride to Kotagiri and the second a long one for which he varies the route. “The weather in the hills is very pleasant, unlike the plains. Until a few days ago, it was so cold in the mornings that my fingers were numb and my nose felt frozen,” remarked Singh as he prepped his bike to participate in the Men’s Master’s category. The only time Singh rides in the plains is when racing at the MVS Cycling Carnival.

ELANGOVAN P

Veteran rider Elangovan, a state-level champion in his younger days, caught everyone’s eye with his enthusiasm and exuberance. At 62, he had travelled to Coimbatore from his home town, Srirangam near Tiruchi to participate in the Veteran Men’s category and encourage youngsters. Using a disposable mineral water bottle and a plastic tube, he had fashioned a crude hydration gear for himself.

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