The National, Thursday, June 9th 2011
THE Tour Long Malagan is expected to be PNG’s most iconic cycling event, featuring 61 cyclists in New Ireland this weekend.
The cyclists will attempt the Buluminski Highway with a scenic backdrop along the sun bleached shores.
The two-day event will start on Saturday, with riders from clubs in Port Moresby, Ok Tedi in Western, Goroka, Manus, Kokopo, Australia and Kavieng.
The event has also been given some international touch with cyclists of different nationalities – South Africans, Algerians, Argentines, Australians and Papua New Guineans – and of the 61 participants, 17 are women from PNG and expatriates.
The event will cover over 180km from Pam in the Namatanai district to Kavieng over two days.
The event will also pump money into the tourism sector with participants making bookings at various guesthouses in the province.
Community groups and schools will also be involved in providing refreshments at various stopovers.
Event organisers, Up South Events, are working closely with the New Ireland Tourism Bureau to ensure the event is a success and promote it as a tourism product in the province.
The tourism bureau also has plans to use this event to showcase riding as healthy lifestyle and awareness against diabetes.
Competitors from Manus and Lae Peddle Power team are already in the province.
Other participants from other centres are expected in the province this week.
The sponsors are Steamships Trading Company, Kavieng Port Services, City Pharmacy, Hardware Haus, Budget Real Estate, Up South Events and other individuals.
Meanwhile, Rex Augwi of Budget Real Estate is the latest individual to come on board with a sponsorship of K4,000 for the event.
Augwi presented the funds to Up South Events representative Steven Damien.
The break-up will see K1,000 for the first male finish in the road race category, K1,000 for the first female finish in the road race category, K1,000 for the first finisher in the mountain bike category, K500 for the winner of first time trial section and K500 for the winner of second time trial section.