My legs cramped several times especially during the second killer climb of Balik Pulau, but we were delighted to smell the durian throughout the climb. Just when I thought the climb was finally over, I overlooked that reaching Tanjung Bungah there was some hilly curves, with high traffic (cars, bicycles), I got my next leg cramped once we came out of Batu Ferringgi. I took a 5minutes rest at a bus stop, which then many other cyclists stopped as well. There was another 10km to head back to Esplanade Penang, which was the starting and finishing line for Campaign For A Lane, 4th edition, organised by G Club, a cycling club from Penang.
The club is probably one of the most active in the country, with most of cycling cousins joining the club’s rides, activities etc.
I was born in Pulau Pinang and this was the first time I am cycling in my home town.
A total of 82.8KM ride, the organiser really thought hard where to bring the so called foreign cyclists to experience Penang, through cycling. In fact, the Penang state has started cycling lane in many heritage and tourism spots, good move from state government. Although the roads are already narrow in Penang, but the state government should be praised as still make it a point to create a cycling path, instead of just saying it as not possible, scrap the plan. The drivers, are equally considerate, because they have been trained in the thoughts that there are cyclists on the road.
While we went collecting the ride kits at Straits Quay, the mall actually has a bicycle parking space, which I only remember seeing it at IKEA, however, seems to have been replaced with old newspapers storage now.
The ride was flagged off by chief minister Lim Guan Eng, whom gave us less than a minute speech, as he said he knew the cyclists were eager to ride and experience Penang. His message to all of us, “Stay health, and stay clean. Bersih, remember we want to be clean.” What an inspiring message at 6:50am.
CM Lim then led the cyclists for a first 500m ride, then we carried on the rest of the 82.3KM, which the organiser has given 5 hours to complete in order to claim the medal.
We first went to Jalan Tun Lim Chong Eu, which we had a chance to admire the Penang Bridge from afar, riding on a bike. We had a short stop some where near the Queenbay Mall as some cyclists clashed into each other while speeding, overtaking (kiasu).
Bayan Lepas was the next destination, where we seen planes taking off, flying above us.
We were then heading to our first climb, which is from Teluk Kumbar to Bukit Genting. I know why it is called Bukit Genting, because it looks like the Genting route heading down, also to encourage myself, I kept pedalling although many cyclists had stopped for pit stop as well as to rub on some deep heat, I only brought sun block, so for cramps, I rely on resting, stretching as well as, some bananas.
I was actually praying when I was climbing Bukit Genting as well as the rest of the climbs at Balik Pulau, Tanjung Bungah. Not sure what to pray other than to help me to pass these, I just prayed in tongue.
After the second climb, we came down to water dam, which I forgot the name, now. It was simply refreshing and I like it.
As we were approaching the final water station at Parkroyal Hotel, I was actually highly excited because we only had another 15KM to finishing line, however, the Lord obviously had some other plan for me – flat tube. I changed the tube in front of Rasa Sayang, and then continued my ride. However, I think the legs cramp started to surface again. That was when I had to stop at a bus stop near Toy Musuem for a short pit stop and later found a Petronas to get myself a 100 PLUS, and there I got to the finishing line.
We were passing through Gurney Drive, which was very busy in terms of traffic. Subsequently to Esplanade Penang.
My eyes were filled with tears, when I was approaching Esplanade Penang, because the Lord has given me the strength to complete the ride. He has sustained me. Praise the Lord.