Late for Nowhere

From life in Southeast Asia to backyard adventures in Kodiak, Alaska

Posts Tagged ‘Bike World Myanmar

Mixed fortunes at Sagaing bike races: Report and photo gallery

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Your blogger, grinding up the steep hill. Photo: Jeff Parry

The fifth and penultimate round of the yearlong MSP bike race series in Myanmar was held in Sagaing, near Mandalay, on the weekend of August 22-23, with proceeds going to benefit the victims of this month’s flooding in Sagaing Region. Our team, sponsored by Bike World bike shop in Yangon, drove up with six riders, including locals Lance Thein Soe and Moe Han, and foreigners Jochen Meissner (Austria), Ben Rowse (Australia), John Henderson (US) and myself (US).

Ben, Jochen and I were the only ones to take part in the road race on August 22, which was only 50km (30 miles) long on flat roads. My ride is best forgotten: I got a flat tire around mile 5, fixed it and carried on, only to get a second flat around mile 15, only to find that my second spare tube was faulty and could not hold air. So I packed it in and caught motorized transport back to the start/finish line. Ben did a bit better, finishing 10th overall and 3rd in the Over-26 age group in a chase group that came in around 1m 30s behind solo winner Kyaw Tun Oo.

The mountain bike race on August 23 consisted of four laps of a beautiful 7.2km (4.5-mile) course with a moderately long and steep climb, a tricky single-track descent identified on the race map as the “danger zone” (cue Kenny Loggins), and a back section on fast, flat and rolling fire roads. Nearly 60 riders participated, and the local villagers came out in force to watch the race and cheer the riders. I did a bit better than the day before, coming in 15th overall and 2nd in the Over-40 age group. Ben, a mountain biker at heart, blazed the course and took the overall win. Jochen dropped out after the first lap, as he was still suffering the effects of the previous day’s road race, which he had ridden on his mountain bike. His presence was not entirely in vain, though: Moe Han snapped his chain on the first climb but finished the race on Jochen’s bike. John Finished mid-pack, and Lance Thein Soe was more interested in having fun than exposing himself to too much pain – he even stopped for a chat or too along the way – and finished well back in the field.

The final round of the series is slated to be held in Yangon in late November or early December.


Rocky departure from Yangon. Photo: Douglas Long


The mountain bike course.


Jochen (left) and John point out the “danger zone” on the course map. Photo: Douglas Long


Ben tackles the climb. Photo: Jeff Parry


Ben on the climb. Photo: Jeff Parry


Ben on the back straight. Photo: Jeff Parry


Your blogger on the hill. Photo: Sai Yout Kyio


Villagers line the finish straight. Photo: Douglas Long


Some local spectators. Photo: Douglas Long


Lance Thein Soe cruises across the finish line. Photo: Douglas Long


Moe Han (left) laments his broken chain. Photo: Douglas Long


Your blogger (left) getting his medal for second place in the Over-40 age group. Photo: Sai Yout Kyio


The Bike World crew. Photo: Jeff Parry

And some random photos from the race by Jeff Parry:





Written by latefornowhere

August 29, 2015 at 1:11 am