Legalised HolyCrit returned!

CHARLES LEE | 8th Dec 2016 | NEWS

The infamous, or rather, illegal HolyCrit races that made headlines last year has staged a comeback. Last Saturday night (3 December), race participants competed with one another in the now-legalised HolyCrit, after its two organisers, project manager Zulkifli Awab and bicycle shop owner Eric Khoo Shui Yan, were imprisoned and fined in October for organising HolyCrit competitions without obtaining permits from the relevant authorities.

Originated in 2008 from one David Trimble, the racing format has developed into an international phenomenon, which has spread to Milan, Barcelona and the streets of London. The duo organised the first (illegal) HolyCrit back in September 2013. The last race was held sometime in November 2015 before the both of them were charged in court for organising such races without proper permits.

This time round, with the approval of the Land Transport Authority and the Traffic Police, close to 100 cyclists – 60 of them on fixed-gear bicycles and the remaining 30 riders on mountain bikes – were cheered by about 400 spectators as they sped along Jalan Benaan Kapal without the application of brakes. Allaying concerns about the safety of participants, the route was lined with safety features such as water barricades and floodlights. There were also 20 traffic marshals, six medics and an ambulance.

The Saturday race had inspired many participants to cycle all the way from Woodlands to Marina Bay to train for the event. The sport even motivated one to revive his long-lost passion for cycling.