OCBC Cycle Virtual Ride sees near-30 per cent jump in participants

·Editorial Team
·3 min read
Nizam A Haja with his wife and kids. The avid cyclist was pleasantly surprised that his son Feroz Zidane and daughter Feyona Ziya asked to join him in the OCBC Cycle Virtual Rides this year. (PHOTO: OCBC Cycle)
Nizam A Haja with his wife and kids. The avid cyclist was pleasantly surprised that his son Feroz Zidane and daughter Feyona Ziya asked to join him in the OCBC Cycle Virtual Rides this year. (PHOTO: OCBC Cycle)

SINGAPORE — More than 6,100 cyclists participated in the second edition of the OCBC Cycle Virtual Ride, nearly 30 per cent more than last year's inaugural event.

In a media release on Monday (5 July), OCBC Bank said that this year's virtual event, which wrapped up on Sunday, saw increases in sign-ups across all categories, with participating cyclists from ages three to 77 years old.

"There were many joyous photos submitted and many heart-warming stories told," Koh Ching Ching, head of group corporate communications at OCBC Bank, said in the media release. 

"To the 11-year-old girl who completed the 200km Virtual Ride; the 67-year-old veteran cyclist who gave his medal to a seven-year-old boy who rode 70km; and simply to all who took the time and the effort to truly enjoy the rides, kudos to you."

Organisers had introduced two new categories this year to cater to more avid cyclists - the 100km and 200km rides. It proved to be popular additions, as the 100km category sold out in just two-and-a-half hours, and the 200km category in 30 minutes. A second round of 700 slots was opened up, and all new slots were also snapped up in one day. 

"The new 100km and 200km Virtual Rides were very well-received, which means they are likely to be placed on the event schedule again next year," Koh said.

Completion period extended due to COVID-19 heightened alert period

As part of the virtual format and in keeping with COVID-19 safe management measures, participants clocked their rides at their own time and pace, completing their preferred distance over a maximum of four rides, starting from 15 May.

With the introduction of the Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) period on 16 May, the completion period was extended from 14 June to 4 July to allow participants more time to complete their rides safely and with a greater peace of mind.

Nizam A Haja, 41, had taken part in the OCBC Cycle events in the last two years with his friends. This year, he was delight that his son Feroz Zidane, 10, and daughter Feyona Ziya, 3, asked to join in the fun. Feroz participated in the 23km The Straits Times Virtual Ride, while Feyona rode in the 5km Mighty Savers Kids Virtual Ride.

“My kids really surprised me this year by asking to participate, and I’ve been so impressed by their commitment and resilience to do their best," he said. 

"Although my wife did not sign up this year, she joined us on many of the rides as we completed our distances. Next year, all four of us will definitely be signing up together.”

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