NILAI: The Johor track cycling squad displayed boundless energy by sweeping both the men’s and women’s 4km team pursuit and individual sprint gold medals in the 20th Malaysia Games (Sukma) at the Nilai National Velodrome, here yesterday.
In addition to the three gold medals won, the women’s quartet of Khairunnisa Aleeya, Normastura Norman, Nur Syafika Natasya Kadir and Siti Nur Adiba Akma Mohd Fuad also broke the national record with a time of 4 minutes 47.317 seconds to erase the previous mark of 4:57.898s set at the 2018 Asian Cycling Championships.
The silver medal went to the Terengganu team in 4:49.177s while Kedah ended third in 4:57.269s.
Commenting on today’s record-breaking feat, Siti Nur Adiba who is also head of the Johor women’s team, said they had only aimed to win gold and did not expect to break the national record.
“We didn’t aim to break the national record and the coach didn’t put pressure on us...(this success) is worth our effort after all. With today’s achievement, I am confident that Johor will be able to do better at the next Sukma,” she said after the race.
She said the success achieved by her quartet also fuelled the spirit for the state’s riders to win more gold medals to emerge as champions of the entire cycling programme of the games.
The Johor men’s quartet of Chan Jian Le, Mohamad Faizal Mohd Hata, Muhammad Nur Aiman Rosli and Zulhelmi Zainal also dominated the 4km team pursuit when it finished tops in 4:11.121s — just two seconds short of the national record of 4:09.600s set at the 2018 Asian Cycling Championships.
Terengganu trailed home second in 4:15.323s, while the bronze went to Perak (4:15.260s).
Johor continued to sweep the track when Muhammad Ridhuan Saharom won the men’s individual sprint, leaving the silver to Mohamad Fariz Haikal Mohamad Kadir of Kedah while his teammate Mohamad Akmal Nazimi Jusena settled for the bronze.
The women’s individual sprint gold went to Kedah’s national rider Nurul Izzah Izzati Mohd Asri when she overcame the challenge of Penang’s Nurul Aliana Syafika Azizan while the bronze medal went to Selangor rider Yong Ann Yi. — Bernama