Riders of the 2014 Smart Cambodia MTB Series put their pedals to the petals on Sunday as they raced through the wooded tracks of Phnom Penh’s Silk Island in the first of five rounds of the annual mountain biking competition.
For the second successive year, EYC rider Yoeun Phyuth seized the initiative in the A1 Elite Open class, capturing first place in the opening race. Although this time out it was a far closer affair.
The 18-year-old Kampong Speu native finished the five 7.4-kilometre laps in a total time of one hour, 27 minutes and 31 seconds, just over a second faster than runner-up Hong Chanmakara of Flying Bikes team.
Event organiser Pierre Yves Catry came home in third in 1:27:48, with Flying Bikes team-mate Nhonh Lenh a further two-and-a-half minutes back in fourth.
Flying Bikes were also well represented in the A2 Expert class for cyclists aged 30 and over, taking the top two podium places. Srey Ya completed the four laps of the course in 1:18:33.5 and his female team-mate Heng Sivlang stunned everyone to grab silver with a ride of 1:19:38.
Kim San of Mekong Cycling Team was third with 1:19:58.
The B1 (18-29) and B2 (30 and over) Intermediate classes over three laps heralded dual victories for the Mekong Cyling Team. Aem Pok, 18, who crossed the finish line in 54:18, fractionally edged Flying Bikes’ Sang Seyha in the B1 division, with Pok’s team-mate Pot Sareth third with 54:25. Meanwhile, Le Chanthorn took top honours in B2 thanks to a 58:16 race. Flying Bikes’ Chris Sullivan ended second and Kim Sambath third.
The two-lap Novice class races of C1 (14-18), C2 (19-35) and C3 (36 and over), which were competed by the most amount of riders, were won respectively by Elevate Cycling Team’s Loy Raksmey Hout (36:53), Sin Davorn (39:55) and Yean Sokhon (40:01).
In the women’s class, Heng Sivlang produced a supreme effort in her second event of the day to finish behind her sister and team-mate Heng Sivgech, who powered through the two laps in 41:20. Third placed Pen Sokly made it a complete podium for the Flying Bikes camp.
Finally, the Kids class for young bikers aged 13 and below belonged to Sorn Visal, who rode the single lap in a top time of 20:01. Ly Poly was just seven seconds slower in second and Bun Wath captured third in 20:30.
The Series’ next round will be held at Prek Leap race track on the outskirts of the capital on June 8.