Wednesday 1st Mar 2017
Manama, Jan. 3(BNA): HH Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, representative of His Majesty the King for Charity Works and Youth Affairs, Chairman of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, President of Bahrain Olympic Committee, has instructed to begin preparations for the official presentation of BAHRAIN MERIDA Cycling Team.
HH had earlier announced of its formation and of it’s purpose to promote the Kingdom of Bahrain on the international stage. The presentation of the team will commence on Sunday, January 8, 2017 in the presence of media personnel representing local and international media outlets. The occasion will give cycling enthusiasts the opportunity to meet the team cyclists who will throw light on the formation of BAHRAIN MERIDA Cycling Team and the positive impacts of its launch in addition to the events that they will be racing in. Moreover, a training session will be organised on Saturday, January 7, 2017, for the team, in which local cycling enthusiasts can also take part.
HH Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad: In Line with HM’s Directives
On this occasion, HH Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa stressed Bahrain’s keenness to be present in different sporting events in order to promote the country in line with HM King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa’s directives which are aimed at highlighting the prosperous image of Bahrain, especially in the area of sport.
“We have been always keen to promote Bahrain by establishing teams bearing the Kingdom name, in order to participate in different sporting events. Such an initiative has been fruitful thus far with our champions conquering different arenas,” HH Shaikh Nasser said, further pointing out: “Launching BAHRAIN MERIDA Cycling Team translates the King’s vision and ideas to position Bahrain at the center of the world’s attention via accommodation of various sports, including the cycling sport which is now attracting a large number of enthusiasts and followers. This initiative will have a positive impact on the Kingdom, so much that it becomes the Home of Cycling in Middle East after earning the same feat in the triathlon sport, and this is a great leap towards promoting the country in line with the 2030 vision.”
“The team establishment is part of our implementation of the strategy to maintaining the position of Bahrain in the limelight on the international stage as we aim to maintain its position as a prominent economic, sporting and media hub in the region.” HH Shaikh Nasser explained.
The Start from Bahrain
HH Shaikh Nasser revealed that the official announcement of the establishment of the team and its inception to participate in various international events will be done from Bahrain, the home of the team which is composed of elite international cycling champions. “Cycling races are amongst the ones being followed by a large base of fans and representation of Bahrain in a global sporting event will surely place the country in the minds of all the people as well as enlarge the community of cyclists in the Kingdom,” HH Shaikh Nasser asserted.
Amongst the Most Followed Sports
HH Shaikh Nasser revealed that the cycling sport is amongst the prestigious sports at international level and is popular worldwide in addition to having a large base of followers and enthusiasts. “To have a team bearing Bahrain’s name competing in this sport arose from the fact of the importance of cycling, as this will enable us to meet our aims of promoting Bahrain and generate results,” HH Shaikh Nasser highlighted. “Cycling is today one of the important sports being practiced in the Kingdom of Bahrain as Bahraini youth and residents have been keen to participate in races. Our main goal is to encourage youth to live a healthy lifestyle,” HH Shaikh Nasser added.
Impacts on Bahraini Cycling
HH Shaikh Nasser revealed that the formation of the team has long-term goals for sports in the Kingdom of Bahrain, with the main focus on raising awareness of cycling as a sport amongst Bahraini youth and to promote Bahraini cyclists as well as to allow them to gain much needed experience so they can shine in international competitions.
A Sporting Event with Futuristic Dimensions
“Choosing Bahrain to host the team’s presentation doesn’t represent a mere sporting event. It has many positive impacts on the economy as well as the reputation of the country in the field of sport. The unveiling of this team represents the biggest sporting event that will position the Kingdom at the forefront of the sport movement. This is only the beginning as the Kingdom will also plan to host international cycling races in the future and this will stimulate local economic growth and help in promoting tourism,” HH Shaikh Nasser affirmed.
Friendship and Tolerance
His Highness Shaikh Nasser added that the establishment of the team and its goals do not stop at sports, economic and tourism but go beyond that to show the whole world what distinguishes the Bahraini people; tolerance and intellectual pluralism.
More than 350 Cyclists in training
More than 350 cyclists including Bahrainis and foreign residents will be participating in the training session, schedule at 9:00am on Saturday morning. The session will be held over a 48 km-route, starting from Sofitel Hotel and concluding at Bahrain International Circuit.
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BNA 1630 GMT 2017/01/03