LAHORE             -         Syed Aqib Shah won the Defence Day 25km Cycle Race, which was conducted by Punjab Cycling Association (PCA) to mark the Independence Day here on Sunday.

Chief guest Col (R) Jahanzeb Khan was the chief guest at the opening ceremony and inaugurated the race. Syed Aqib of Lahore finished first while Hafiz Waheed of Sialkot secured second and Masood Ahmad of Faisalabad bagged third position. Chief guest at the concluding ceremony were Col (R) Umar Shabbir, who, along with PCA President Moazzam Khan Klair, distributed prizes among the position holders.

Speaking on the occasion, PCA President Moazzam Khan Klair thanked for sponsoring the event and hoped that more such sponsors would come forward and contribute in the promotion of this beautiful game. “The purpose of conducting this event was to pay tribute to the martyrs, who sacrificed their lives for this country.

“After the Covid-19 pandemic, it was our first competitive event, in which more than 100 players took part. I am very glad to see such a huge participation in the cycling event as in the past, only players from lower middle class used to take part but I am very delighted to see the participants from upper middle and elite class, which is a healthy sign for us as well as for Pakistan cycling, which, after such a healthy participation, will further grow and excel at international level,” he added.

He said: “It is true that we couldn’t conduct competitions during Covid-19 Pandemic, but on the other hand, it is also a good sign that all the cyclists continued practice at their homes and kept on preparing well even at treadmills and make them ready for the upcoming events. Now what we just need is all-out support from Punjab as well as federal government to help in us further flourishing cycling in the country. They must provide us special cycling tracks on weekends, where we may conduct national level events and also keep our players save from any untoward incidents, which will help us promote this game at the highest level.

“We are going to start international-standard academy at the Cycling Velodrome with the help of Pakistan Sports Board and Sports Board Punjab, which will help us find fresh talent and groom them under able coaches, so that they may serve the country and win laurels for it at international level,” Moazzam concluded.