Since Clovis Kamzong's coronation in 2017, the yellow jersey has eluded Cameroonian riders. From October 3, the Cycling Lions will have the opportunity to break the Indian sign in this 23rd edition of the Chantal Biya Cycling Grand Prix.
The Chantal Biya Grand Prix gets underway on October 3
Cameroon is about to experience a major sporting event with the kick-off of the 23rd Chantal Biya Cycling Grand Prix. The first pedal strokes will take place on October 3, in the seaside town of Kribi, in the south of the country. In addition to its importance for the host country, this cycling competition has significant stakes on several fronts.
Winning back the yellow jersey
On the sporting front, Cameroon is hungry for victory. Indeed, since 2017 and the coronation of Clovis Kamzong, the yellow jersey has eluded Cameroonian riders. And it's time to bring it home. However, the task will not be easy, as this 23rd Chantal Biya Cycling Grand Prix counts among its participants renowned African teams, notably Algeria, Morocco and Rwanda, in addition to top-level European competitors. Local riders will have to outdo themselves to win this prestigious edition.
"The first challenge will be to win the yellow jersey at the end of the first stage," says Jean-Baptiste Biaye, an executive with the Cameroon Cycling Federation. "The African and European teams invited are not children at heart. From this point of view," he admits, "the competition will be of a very high level. We'll have to fight hard to win this edition".
The challenge of organization
In terms of organization, Cameroon has a proven track record of hosting major sporting competitions. The recent African Cup of Nations soccer tournament is a case in point. As for cycling, the country has already successfully organized competitions such as the Tour Cycliste du Cameroun and the Grand Prix Chantal Biya. But at the Federation, there's no question of resting on our laurels.
This edition must be an opportunity to show the world that Cameroon is capable of organizing an event of this scale, especially as the event's patron is none other than the wife of the Head of State.
What's more, the commitment of the President of the Republic to make an army helicopter available for live coverage of the event testifies to the country's determination to ensure the success of this 23rd Chantal Biya Cycling Grand Prix.
A boon for local authorities
Politically speaking, the Chantal Biya Grand Prix has great symbolic importance as a competition sponsored by the wife of the Head of State. The local authorities chosen to host the race are proud of this, as it represents a symbolic recognition of their importance. What's more, the event will have a significant media impact, with several TV channels broadcasting the competition, providing a showcase for the communities.
But the stakes are not limited to pride, as the economic impact is also important. Communities have the opportunity to promote their assets and attract investment thanks to this increased visibility. The Chantal Biya Cycling Grand Prix is much more than just a sporting event.It embodies the country's sporting, organizational and political aspirations.
"The Federation, the administrations, the people and the partners involved are mobilized to meet these challenges so that Cameroon can shine in the international cycling spotlight, offering a memorable spectacle to cycling enthusiasts," continues Jean-Baptiste Biaye. Enthusiasm is growing as the race approaches its scheduled kick-off in Kribi.