Official Website of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council
Stand-in cyclist happy with result
Monday, December 16, 2013

Muhammad Rafiuddin Zikara finished 14th out of 18 competitors in the men's 50-kilometre individual time trial at the 27th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Naypyidaw yesterday.

The Bruneian clocked a time of 1:18:49 for the race that began and ended at the Rose roundabout.

Mark John Lexer Galedo of the Philippines finished at the top of the podium after crossing the line on 1:07:00.

Robin Manullang claimed the runner-up spot on 1:07:38 while another Filipino, Ronald Oranza, bagged the bronze with his time of 1:07:50.

Rafiuddin was satisfied with the results despite the poor finish especially since it was his first time taking part in the event.

"I have no prior experience for this event. I'm just replacing Raihaan (Abd Aziz)'s position and this was a warm up for my final event on Wednesday," Rafiuddin told The Brunei Times after the race.

"The course wasn't very tough but it was extremely windy. I'm satisfied with my time since it was the first time participating in this event," he added.

According to national cycling coach Yafiz Jamaludin, the decision to include Rafiuddin for the event was only made weeks prior to the biennial Games.

He had only included the Bruneian's name into the event on Saturday during the team managers meeting.

"He has never done this event before and we didn't prepare for it. This event was supposed to be for Raihaan and we didn't want to have no participants for the event," explained Yafiz.

"We chose Rafiuddin as he has no events for the next two days. We also wanted to participate in the race to support the organisers," he added.

"I didn't set any target for him as we only started training for the event a few weeks ago. It is still good for him though so that it helps to prepare his speed for the team road race (on Wednesday)," continued Yafiz.

The national cycling team will continue their campaign at the Games with the 100-km team time trial event.

The Sultanate will be represented by four riders - Reduan Yusop, Azmi @ Lokman Abd Hadzid, Ahmad Rifa'ie Hj Johor and Muhammad I'maadi Abd Aziz - for the event which will begin at the Rose roundabout and end at the Taung Kya village.

The national cycling team had opened their account in Myanmar with the cross country olympic event at Mount Pleasant on Friday.

Both participants - Rafiuddin and I'maadi - failed to complete the race. The main target was a strong finish for Rafiuddin but he was hit by bad luck after suffering from a tyre puncture in the first lap of the 4.1km course.

Courtesy from Brunei Times