By Neto Baptiste
President of the Antigua and Barbuda Cycling Federation (ABCF) St Clair Williams, acknowledging that the sport has not been attracting new and younger female riders, believes the cycling clubs and teams here must lead the charge from a recruiting and development standpoint.
His statement comes amidst debate over the dwindling number of female riders taking part in competitions organised by the federation including the recent National Cycling Championships.
“Well, we have been focusing on the development of the sport and when I say development I am talking all around and we are looking to get even more junior riders into the programme. In addition to that we are also looking for more females as well so it is incumbent upon the clubs and teams around Antigua and Barbuda to do a little more recruiting. The Antigua and Barbuda Cycling Federation can facilitate all the clubs but it is not our direct responsibility to do the recruiting,” he said.
Four female riders competed in the Individual Time Trial held on Saturday while four also rode in the Individual Road Race on Sunday.
Williams said also there is a need for young male riders as the federation seeks to develop riders for the next level.
“We are looking forward to the guys for the different clubs to do more recruiting, get more females in training and not only females but junior riders as well so that we could have a mix of the senior riders and the junior riders so that we can develop a good product to send out to the world,” he said.
Veterans Robert Marsh and Lindsay Duffy are the new male and female title holders in the Antigua and Barbuda Cycling Federation (ABCF) Individual Time Trial while Emmanuel Gayral and Venessa Kelsick reigned supreme in the men’s and women’s division of the Individual Road Race all held last Saturday and Sunday.