Marlon Williams pedals to record win; Matthews’ early celebrations jolted
By Franklin Wilson
Marlon ‘Fishy’ Williams made a historic return to winning ways, setting a new record in the feature 35-lap event at the DeSinco Trading / Degree sponsored 11 Race Cycle Meet held at the Mecca of cycling in Guyana, the National Park, yesterday.
Unlike previous races at the said venue, the sprint home started way earlier than usual, about 400 meters to the line by the five riders that were leading the race from lap #9; Walter Grant-Stuart, Enzo Matthews, Rastaff O’Selmo, Neil Reece and Marlon Williams.
Matthews, like Williams have been struggling with form this season and the former seemed well set to pull off a remarkable win but his early celebrations came crashing to an abrupt halt as Williams shot past him like lightening in the final few meters to stop the clock at One Hour 14 Minutes 59 Seconds – a new National Park record – erasing the old mark of One Hour 16 Minutes that was held by Robin Persaud. Berbician Neil Reece also made a welcome return to the top flight cycling by taking the 3rd spot just ahead of Linden’s Rastaff O’Selmo and Grant-Stuart who claimed 5th place. Veteran National Road race champion Junior Niles closed off the top six positions; he had earlier won the Veterans Under-50 race to cap another fine day at the office.
Yesterday’s feature event attracted a total of 48 starters but yet again, the seasoned campaigners seemed more focused on watching each other rather than upping their competitive game. If that were so, the record time achieved could have been even lower.
Consistent top performer Robin Persaud and Alonzo Greaves both found themselves having to come out of the race after being lapped by the leading five, they exited in lap 19.
Yesterday’s event did not see participation by Guyana’s leading junior and juvenile riders; Raynauth Jeffrey, Paul DeNobrega, Raul Leal and Michael Anthony who are in the Dominican Republic representing Guyana at the Junior Caribbean Cycling Championships which will conclude today.
Representatives of DeSinco Trading and Degree were on hand to witness the main event and also officiated at the presentation ceremony. All the competitors were presented with Degree Deodorant and expressed their pleasure at the generosity of the sponsor.
Meanwhile, The Bike Shop of Robb Street, as they have been doing, presented special prizes to the top three finishers in the Upright race. According to Owner Jude Bentley, it is their way of encouraging riders in this category of racing. He also stated that they will continue to maintain this tradition.