The Sufferfest African Dream Team Represents Lesotho at the 2018 Commonwealth Games
Guest post by Mark West, Team Manager of The Sufferfest African Dream Team
Team Lesotho has arrived in Australia for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games with a contingent of four cyclists, all team members of The Sufferfest African Dream Team.
Olympian Phetetso Monese and teammates Tumelo Makae, and Likeleli Masitise will challenge the Mountain Bike race on 12th April, while Malefetsane Lesofe has traded in his knobbies for skinny tyres to tackle the Road Race on 14th April.
The journey of friendship between The Sufferfest and the cycling team from the tiny mountain kingdom of Lesotho began in 2013. The Sufferfest came on board as our Official Training Partner and supplied us with training plans and access to their library of training videos. For a rag-tag bunch of cycle-crazy mountain bikers, the structured training system and intuitive interface was just what we needed to take the team to the next level.
In the five years since, the partnership has flourished, with The Sufferfest’s annual sponsorship growing - enabling the team to register as a UCI accredited Mountain Bike Team and to regularly compete in local and international events. The investment has seen the team develop into a truly competitive team with global aspirations.
The goal of competing at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games is all about development for us. Though we are not at the stage of hunting for medals yet, we’ve already set our sights on the podium for the 2022 Games. We have every reason to be optimistic, as we already have two riders enrolled on full Olympic Scholarships at the UCI World Cycling Centre in Aigle, Switzerland (site of the famous SUFCamp) and are witnessing a huge growth in performance for our riders.
Our team is all about making dreams come true for young, talented riders in Africa. The long journey to the Commonwealth Games has not always been easy for our team, and the fact that we are here at all brings even more significance to the Opening Ceremonies. Three of the riders lost parents at a young age and grew up in difficult, impoverished circumstances. Cycling has not only given them a way to support their families, but also hope for a better future. Tonight, seeing them represent their country in front of the world will be another dream come true.
Join me as we cheer the team on to GLORY, HONOUR, and VICTORY. On behalf of the entire team, we’d like to thank The Sufferfest and the community of Sufferlandrians around the world. We wouldn’t be here without you.
—Mark West, Team Manager of The Sufferfest African Dream Team
Check out this great profile on the team the good folks at SR Suntour put together.