Riding high over the beautiful sand dunes of the Western Region of Abu Dhabi, over seventy contestants in the WRDC Tour de Al Gharbia cycle race battled it out for best individual rider and best team performance.
Thanks to the generous sponsorship of WRDC, the smooth, quiet road between Madinat Zayed and Ghayathi whispered to the feather light spin of the highly tuned cycles.
Organised by Madinat Zayed and Ruwais Higher Colleges of Technology, the 40 Km race has become an annual community event. Many of the riders were students from the Higher Colleges of Technology who had traveled from other Emirates to take part.
Other participants were school students from all over Al Gharbia and over twenty members of the local and wider Abu Dhabi community, were competing just for the thrill of it.
After the race, riders took a ‘victory ride’ back to the colleges for a well deserved lunch and to receive their trophies.
College Advisory Board members presented cups and certificates to the winners and everyone who participated was awarded a medal. There was much jubilation in the Dubai team as they won the rolling trophy for Best Overall Team.
Salem Mobarak Salem from Al Moghere Sila School, won first prize for the school students and Mohmed Darwish from Dubai Men’s College was the first HCT student to finish. Tom Smith from Abu Dhabi Women’s college was first overall to cross the finish line.
Thanks were expressed especially to the police, who have supported this event from the beginning.
Lieutenant Hamad Nasseb Al Hamadi, from the traffic police said ‘this is our duty, we are ready any time to help the community.’ He was in charge of the team of 9 police cars and 18 police men He said he was really pleased to take part in such a well organised and well planned event. The ambulance service was on hand and water was available all along the route.
The message was clear, cycling is a clean and healthy way to travel, cycling as part of a healthy lifestyle benefits everyone.
Riders met up at Madinat Zayed Colleges for a forum on the evening before the race. They shared ideas on preserving the environment and preserving health and covered health and safety issues.
Michael Haddin, exercise consultant at Haddins in Abu Dhabi generously agreed to talk to the participants about Sustainable Exercise, how to exercise wherever you are, without a gym or expensive equipment.
We all lead busy lives and it is hard to find the time or the will to exercise. Michael taught some simple ways to work out, wherever you are and had several volunteers running around the auditorium, balancing, running up stairs, standing up and sitting down and doing some press ups.
So, time to start preparing, there is no excuse now not to join the WRDC Tour de Al Gharbia next year.