Cambodian cycling motivated to race hard at SEA Games

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Cambodian cyclists and delegates in a group photo taken on May 9 ahead of their trip to compete in the ongoing 31st SEA Games in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi. SUPPLIED

The Cambodian Cycling Federation (CCF) is highly motivated, as it prepares for its mid-May departure to Vietnam for the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games). The federation is scheduled to compete in two cycling disciplines.

Nine Cambodian cyclists – along with four coaches and delegates from the federation – will join the Games but will be split into two teams to travel from Cambodia to Vietnam: mountain biking and road cycling teams.

Three men and two women athletes along with three delegates will leave for Hanoi on May 12 – which is the date of the official opening ceremony of the 31st SEA Games – to compete in the mountain bike men’s and women’s single categories, as well as a mixed relay event, from May 14 to 16.

Meanwhile, five athletes and one coach will leave Cambodia on May 16 to take part in the road cycling criterium, individual time trial and individual mass start road race.

CCF secretary-general Nou Chamroeun said the Cambodian cyclists are ready and highly committed to achieving their best results, but seemed reluctant to set medal goals.

“After careful preparation and a lot of hard training, we are hopeful of some good results, but we cannot say with certainty which medals we think we have a shot at bringing home,” he told The Post on May 10.

Chamroeun placed high hopes on the two female Cambodian cyclists, saying that he saw a lot of raw potential in them and that he expected strong finishes from them.

In a May 9 meeting with the cycling team, CCF vice-president Kem Sokhon encouraged the Cambodian national cyclists to compete hard and grab good results for the Kingdom.

Cambodian-American cyclist Phan ‘Johnny’ Jonathan expressed his excitement after arriving in the Kingdom to prepare for the ongoing 31st SEA Games in Hanoi.

“I am more than ready to attend this regional sporting event – with the goal of winning an international gold medal. It is a dream come true for me to represent my home country after working so hard in training,” said Jonathan.

Cambodia’s cycling team are Khem Malai, Yoath Kanika, Sang Seyha, Hout Loyraksmey, Lim Viwath, Chhan Chhay Fhong, Phan Jonathan, Mao Piseth and Chan Pich.