Ghana’s cycling team showed a much improved performance as they clocked an overall average speed of 42km/hr to place third in the overall Team Classification, after Burkina Faso and Togo with Mali and Benin following in that order.
This year’s 20th Edition Tour of Togo which was held from 18-24 April, saw the team win five jerseys and again receive a glittering trophy for Fair Play and a cash prize of 145,000CFA for placing third.
After a superb outing at this year’s Cowbell National Cycling Tour of Ghana, 12 cyclists were selected to represent the nation at which five West African countries participated made up of Ghana, Benin, Mali, Burkina Faso and host nation Togo.
The Ghana Cycling Association Ghana in a release copied to GNA Sports, said the country paraded two set of teams comprising in-form Henry Tetteh Djanmah of Die Hard Club, Samuel Anim of Young Stars Club and a Tour Du Ghana sensation.
The rest are Francis Tetteh and Prosper Agbo of City Migro, Isaac Odonkor of All Stars Club, Aminu Mohammed and Adnan Mohammed of River Park Club. The rest include debutants Yakubu Egala Moro of Die Hard Club, Abdul Razak Mumin and William Nartey of His Majesty (HM) Cycling Club, Stephen Kabu and the young prodigy, Anthony Boakye of River Park Club.
The Tour, which run over nine (9) stages rolled off from Lome to Atakpame over a distance of 128km and was won by a Burkinade Sprinter, Minougon Noufon. It was a bullish take off from the Burkinabes and within the first 20mins they broke away from the main team.
Ghana’s spirit gem Anim was however bungled out of the race as a result of injury but captain of the side Aminu Mohammed managed to receive two jerseys for his effort.
The Ghanaian side regained their pedal composure and gave a good account of themselves in the 3rd, 4th and 5th stages with Djangmah rubbing shoulders with the motivated Burkinade side.
The 72km distance from Notse to Kpalime was one of the toughest# test for the teams but that was where the up and coming prodigy, Boakye carved for himself the Combativity Jersey.
The road to Mountain Agon which was the 8th stage was a two way battle between Ghana and Burkina Faso. Ghana’s two top mountaineers Francis Tetteh and Henry Djangmah were up to the scratch but it was the latter who broke away with Burkinade’s Minougou Noufon coming second.
Ghana’s next assignment will be yet another test in the arid region of Burkina Faso for the ‘Boucle du Coton’ which will involve riders from Algeria, France, Burkina Faso, Togo, Cote D’Ivoire and Senegal.
The event is expected to be a perfect preparatory drill for the team ahead of this year’s All Africa Games to be held in Maputo, Mozambique in September.
The Association expressed it gratitude to the Ministry of Youth and Sports, National Sports Council and other stakeholders for Ghana’s participation in this year’s Tour.