Special track bicycle to realise first Olympic gold dream
Published on: Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Kuala Lumpur: National track cyclists would be using a special bicycle in the race to clinch the country’s first Olympic gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games from July 24 to Aug 9.The bicycle which is specially designed to suit three national racers namely Azizulhasni Awang, Muhammad Shah Firdaus Sahrom and Muhammad Fadhil Zonis, is made from carbon fibre which is harder but lighter using the latest aerodynamic technology to ensure lower wind resistance.
The bicycle was produced via a RM13 million research and development project between the National Sports Institute (ISN) and a United Kingdom company, TOTALSIM Ltd which has the aerodynamic engineering expertise.
ISN chief executive officer, Ahmad Faedzal Md Ramli said the government via its Podium Programme took proactive measures in using the latest technology on the racing track to assist Malaysia realise its Olympic Games dream.
“After years of working together with the experts from the United Kingdom, we learned many things through this project such as changing position on athletes training to produce power in speed for the same amount of power output.
“We worked on finding other areas where we could potentially find reductions in drag and this is what this whole project is all about, setting the marginal games,” he told the media at the launch of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Track Bicycle at ISN, Monday.
Based on the International Cycling Union (UCI) condition, the vehicle used for Olympic Games must be available in the market and the WX-R Vorteq bicycle model is already in the market since January 1 with each costing RM300,000.
The bicycle has also attracted the interest of teams from Lithuania and Greece.
National track cycling coach, John Beasley said the special bike has been used by national cyclists at the recent World Championship in Berlin where Azizulhasni won two bronze medal in keirin and sprint.
“The bike is pretty special, it is made of titanium and carbon fibre, done with 3D printer. As light as possible and stiff, with carbon tubes, lined with ridges to keep weight down for maximum strength.
“As you can see our three athletes in Berlin, everyone did a personal best. Obviously its not just the bike only, athletes have to be in good condition too,” he said. – Bernama