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Tribute to my cycling coaches

I would like to thank all the wonderful coaches that have guided me throughout my cycling journey. Without them, I would not have been a cyclist enthusiast today.

Alex Ong (Singapore)

Alex Ong was my 1st cycling mentor. I addressed him as Uncle Alex. I knew him in Rodalink (Siglap) when my friends brought me to the shop to buy bicycle accessories. I was crazy in cycling and neglected my homework. He would say “If you don’t study, don’t cycle with me.” He cared about my safety and wanted me to call him when I got home safely after the rides. I was introduced to Geylang Cycling Team by Uncle Alex.

Ariff Hashim, Alex Ong, Terence Lee

Ariff Hashim (Singapore)

This was the first time I met a cycling legend of Singapore, Ariff Hashim who coached the Geylang Cycling Team since 1977 till present. Coach Ariff introduced me to Motor-Pacing where I had to ride at high speed drafting behind his motorbike. Motor-Pacing is often seen during the trainings of professional cycling teams. At that time, Geylang Cycling Team was the only team that had a motorbike to follow and train the cyclists during trainings. Coach Ariff taught me many things. He taught me how to ride properly in rotating pace line formation. He gave me motor-pacing sessions to build up my strength and cadence in riding. He improved my technique of acceleration during sprinting. He taught me techniques to breakaway from the peloton. He taught me how to do interval trainings based on the number of lamppost on the road. In addition, Coach Ariff gave me sports massage to ensure my legs recover in time for the next training session. Trainings were tough that I often faced with nausea due to the build up of lactic acid in my body. Coach Ariff taught me the 4 ‘S’ in cycling: Skill, Strength, Speed, Stamina. Coach Ariff is currently my cycling coach.

Motor-Pacing in Geylang Cycling Team during 1970’s

Yeow Chung (Singapore)

Yeow Chung invited me to join his BikeLabz Race team. He gave me numerous training tips which made me a better cyclist. These training tips were valuable to my cycling journey. He taught me techniques to improve cornering during cycling by practising the executing of pedal stroke and amount of bike lean into the corners. It was a memorable experience when he conducted the training using the “Islands Carpark” behind Singapore Indoor Stadium. In addition, he taught me the concept of pyramid power training in cycling up Mount Faber.

Samuel Yang (Singapore)

I knew Coach Samuel after joining BikeLabz Race Team. He taught me how to cycle confidently in a peloton and improve my bike handling. In addition, he taught me how to do Van-Pacing along Changi Coast Road with the rest of the team members. Coach Samuel taught me how to determine the wind direction during racing by looking how the displacement of the branches on the surrounding trees.

Training with Terengganu Cycling Team
(SUKMA)
Photo by Kerry Lau via http://kerry-lau.blogspot

Husin (Terengganu)

On my second day of the summer training camp in Kuala Terengganu, I was introduced to Coach Husin. He was the head coach for Terengganu Cycling Team (SUKMA) in 2012. I was frightened when I first saw him because it was my first time out of Singapore for cycling trainings. He was a coach who was passionate in teaching the Terengganu boys and myself. He taught me how to hold onto the team support vehicle at 60km/hr to bridge back to the training squad when I could not follow the high speed ride of his team. Coach Husin made me realized that it was possible to cycle 1000km in a week.

Paidi (Terengganu)

Coach Paidi is one of the coaches for Terengganu Cycling Team (SUKMA) in 2012. He was strict with my punctuality in reporting for trainings. He taught me several techniques, such as how to do feeding as a domestic rider. Coach Paidi taught me to do sprint intervals along the Terengganu highway.

Adrian Ng (Singapore)

I knew Coach Adrian from BikeLabz Race Team. In 2013, Coach Adrian gave me elite training programs. His goal was to make me a professional cyclist. Even though I did not make it as a professional cyclist as I wanted to concentrate on my studies, I am thankful for his time and effort in training me by analysing my power output after each training session. He would sit down with me over Korean food and discussed strategies to improve cycling. Coach Adrian taught me how to train efficiently and effectively using the crank-based power meter. A painful training routine is to do a 1 hour Individual Time Trial along Changi Coast Road to measure my Functional Threshold Power. He taught me the technique to build up the body core muscles. He taught me how to do cleat into the pedals without looking at it. Coach Adrian planned the training program to fit to my fitness level.

Alan Hoon (Singapore)

I knew Coach Alan from 30 Forty Cycling Team. He was a well known Coach who specialised in Metafit programs. He conducted core training workouts in neighbourhood fitness zone for me and others.