Singapore cycling 1961 - 1963
Posted: Friday 21st August 2020
The main racing during the period 1961 – 63 was massed start on a 10Km circuit. The start was on Dover Road, wide and quiet mainly used by the nearby Army Barracks. Start time was always 7 am and usually each corner had a policeman on duty, the timekeeper was Alan Johnson from Singapore Polytechnic.
At first there were long events of 150, 100 and 75-miles Shorter events were later introduced organised by the RAF, Army and Navy Associations. Probably to cater for our needs to keep out of the heat and these were usually less than 50 miles. After the events Kiang Hong supplied soft drinks and the finish-line banner. Sometimes tea and ginger was bought at the hawkers stall at the corner of Dover and Clementi
Other events I remember are a Hill Climb held on Mount Faber.
A 25-mile time trial was run on the Bukhit Timah Road to head towards Krangi turning before the Causeway then along Madai Rd turning in the road to retrace to near the start point .The best time I recall was just under 59 mins. A 2-up was also tried over the same course.
Wednesday was the afternoon for service personnel to take part in sport, a couple of 10 mile time trials, these did not attract a good turnout as The Army and Navy riders were often away for long periods and most of the local boys worked on that day.
Another event was a 100Km Team Time Trial (10 laps of the Gap Circuit) run to give the Singapore team a time to qualify for the Asian games. A second local team was entered and the RAF also fielded a team.
A 3 laps of the Gap circuit time trial was held from time to time, another event tried was a race along a stretch of dual carriage way with a traffic island at each end, this had to be abandoned because of the large number of people spilling on to the road.
Another qualifying event was at Farrar Park track As you can see below, the crowds were huge: