New pro cycling team aims to actively represent PH in overseas races | Inquirer Sports

New pro cycling team aims to actively represent PH in overseas races

/ 07:40 PM January 26, 2023

THE Victoria Sports Pro Cycling Team is presented before the media and the public during its launch Saturday at the Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City. (From left) Jay Oconer, Jerry Aquino, Marcio Barbosa, Pedro Paulinho, Andrei Cardoso, Jose Mendes, Daniel Carino, Pako Ochoa, Ean Cajucom, Luis Krog, Kelvin Mendoza,  Micael Isidoro (Sports Director), Jobert Catina (Rider Care and Mechanic), and  Rayzon Galdonez (Asst. Sports Director). –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

THE Victoria Sports Pro Cycling Team is presented before the media and the public during its launch Saturday at Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City. . –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines–Looking to make its mark on both local and international stages,  Victoria Sports Cycling Team plans on being an active competitor in major cycling tournaments here and abroad.

Team representative Pako Ochoa said the country’s newest pro cycling team “aims to be the first Philippine team to regularly and actively represent the country in major international cycling tournaments in Asia and countries around the world.”

VSCT–which is bolstered by veteran Portuguese professional cyclists–was officially launched over the weekend with a press conference at Victoria Sports Tower followed by a community ride in Quezon Memorial Circle the day after.

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“It is an exciting time for Philippine sports. Our country won its first gold medal in the Olympics two years ago, and this year the country will be represented in both the Fifa Women’s World Cup and the Fiba Basketball World Cup,” said Ochoa.

“We are slowly showing the world that Filipino athletes can be competitive in international sporting competitions, and we will set out to prove that Filipinos have what it takes to excel in cycling as well.”

VSCT is composed of riders Jhay Oconer, Kelvin Mendoza, Márcio Barbosa, Luis Krog, Pedro Paulinho, Ochoa, Ean Cajucom, José Mendes, Daniel Cariño, Jerry Aquino, and André Cardoso.

Mendez is a former World Tour Rider for Bora-Hansgrohe and a two-time national road champion of Portugal while Cardoso is a former World Tour rider for Trek Segafredo.

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But competing in  Union Cycliste Internationale races is not the team’s only goal as it also aims to help with “the meteoric rise of the popularity of biking in the Philippines.”

“We are extremely grateful to all the companies that share our vision,” said Ochoa, “[We] also believe that we can go beyond making cycling more popular–that we can raise the level of cycling and make it a part of our culture, as it is in other parts of the world where the needs and rights of bikers are embraced and respected.” -Celest Flores-Colina

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TAGS: Victoria Sports Cycling Team

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