Apologies for the lack of posts recently and the lack of of pictures in this article, it has been a busy few months and I’ve neglected you all.
Let’s take a look at the state of cycling in Singapore as 2018 comes to a close.
DirTraction have long been in the event space and for 2018 they were not present on the cycling side. There has been progress in cycling events in 2018 however the loss of DirTraction from the space means the community lose some variety.
Hopefully DirTraction return to the event space in 2019.
Cycosports taking over the National Championships
Cycosports have been working in the event space for a number of years as well. With DirTraction moving out of the space it left the door open for Cycosports to take on the national races.
2018 saw Cycosports take on 3 new races (Nats – TTT, ITT and Road Race) and convert the only classic race in the calendar to a 3 day stage race. The question is have they expanded their team to support that growth?
Cycosports now have no competitors in the space and therefore have little incentive to provide the best race experience possible for entrants. Given the captive audience any race experience seems acceptable from their point of view.
It feels like perhaps the team is stretched further than their means after taking on the responsibility of the 3 National races plus the introduction of Tour de Kepri.
Kent now also sits full time on the SCF committee so I hope the level of event organisation and racing will improve given the empirical suggestion of the synergy between SCF and Cycosports.
Cyclocross Singapore expand the CX offering in Singapore
Arnold at Cyclocross SG continues to bring CX racing to forefront of Singapore cyclists. In 2018 CyclocrossSG secured a great course down by Kallang Riverside Park. One which is available in 2019 as well.
Looking forward Cyclocross SG have also secured the baking of OCBC and the event looks to be even better in 2019 than it was in 2018.
Odlo x HolyCrit adds to the race calendar
HolyCrit returned to the race calendar in 2018 with 2 events. Securing the Karting Arena track next to The Grandstand.
Hugely popular with riders and having that home-grown Redhook Crit feel. A real community spirit exists around these events.
The short course, heat based, knock out format meant these events were very inclusive. 300 riders participated and to host so many heats and a final meant the event ran past midnight. Some loved that, other not so much.
I look forward to seeing what HolyCrit will bring in 2019. I would love to see these events grow into full fledged criterium races of 45-60 minutes.
Less CFS events in 2018 – even less in 2019
The car free Sunday criterium races have been hugely popular with riders, and selling out in almost every event held.
2018 saw a cut in the number of CFS race days on the calendar. To call this a series would inaccurate. There were not enough race days for the Open/Elite category, and a stronger focus seemed to be on the Masters category.
Teams all wrapping up for the year
By now all teams have had their awards nights and have either packed up, or finished their off-season and are starting to look forward to Tour of Phuket
2019 outlook, rules changing and grades changing
There are significant changes being made to the 2019 category and overall points structure in Singapore and one cannot help but think there is a chicken and egg situation at hand. Trying to fix the grading and categories to entice more people to race without having races to then race in.. feels odd. Let’s hope these changes are the first piece in a greater overall plan.
2018 saw an increase in cycling activity but perhaps a decrease in race days. The shift towards off-road development in 2019 means the road races are being forgotten. Again 1 step forwards, 1 step backwards. SCF continue to make stagnant progress in developing cycling in Singapore.
With optimism I look forward to 2019 being the year where all the pieces come together. We as a community would like to get more road racing, a weekly criterium race, and for race numbers continue to grow.
What did you think of 2018? Leave a comment below!