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SHAH ALAM : Newly promoted into the World Tour, Sou
th Africa outfit Dimension Data
will be back to Malaysia from February 24 to March 2nd
to defend the title they claimed
with Algeria’s Youcef Reguigui under the colors of
MTN-Qhubeha last year.
Now a multinational team with a strong European and
Australian flavor, Dimension Data
will be fully African when they’ll tackle Le Tour d
e Langkawi for the sixth straight time.
“It was a huge achievement for us to win this race
in 2015 and we’re always delighted to
come back”, said team manager Douglas Ryder who was
himself one of the pioneers as
he took part in the very first LTdL with the South
African national team in 1996 (5 thoverall) and was crowned the King of the Mountains
in 1998.
Reguigui won’t be part of the line-up this time aro
und but Malaysian fans will be able to
discover Songezo Jim, 25, who completed his first G
rand Tour last year with the Vuelta a
España and is likely to make its debut at the Tour
de France next July.

“It’ll be my first time at Le Tour de Langkawi and
in Malaysia”, said Jim (Jim is his family
name). “I’m excited to be racing there. I’ve raced
in Asia only one time before at the Tour
de Korea. I know of Le Tour de Langkawi that there
are always a few sprint stages. It’s
always a fast race. The Genting stage is very famou
s but it’s been taken off this year so
it’ll make the race more open and more interesting.“

“We’ll come to Le Tour de Langkawi after we won the
race last year, so everybody will
be watching us even though we don’t have the defend
ing champion but we don’t know
yet who’s gonna be the GC rider in our team. It can
be me, it can be Jaco [Venter], it can
be Reinhardt [Janse van Rensburg who is also a spri
nter and has been entered as a
reserve rider]. That will give us more chances to s
urprise our adversaries. We have a
few guys who can climb well in the Cameron Highlands.”

Hailing from Cape Town in South Africa, Jim has alr
eady raced in America (Tour of Utah),
in northern Europe (Arctic Race of Norway), in the
Middle East (Abu Dhabi Tour) and
recently for the first time in Australia where the
Santos Tour Down Under opened the
2016 season.
“Travelling is part of being a professional cyclist
”, he said. “It’s amazing to be able to see
the world as we do. However, we don’t do it as tour
ists. We firstly aim at getting a result
for the team. We have to enjoy it, otherwise it wou
ld be a too hard job.”
“Le Tour de Langkawi has a worldwide impact”, noted
the event’s CEO Emir Abdul Jalal.
“Considering the recent huge improvements of Africa
on the global map of cycling, we
have to invite Dimension Data but we can proudly sa
y that our organization has been the
first to welcome African cyclists with an absolute
consistency in the past twenty years.
We love to see them back, especially Dimension Data
with riders from different African
countries. I’m sure they’ll perform again and possi
bly even better than before as their
inclusion into the World Tour has made them stronge
r with participating to events like
the Santos Tour Down Under.”
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Nic Dougall, Songezo Jim, Johan Van Zyl, Jaco Vente
r (Rsa), Adrien Niyonshuti
(Rwa), Mekseb Debesay (Eri). Reserve: Reinhardt Jan
se van Rensburg (Rsa).
Organised by Ciclista Sports Sdn Bhd, the 21st edit
ion of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL)
from 24 February to 2 March, 2016 is set to cover m
ore than 1,100km over 8 stages, the
UCI 2.HC (hors category) race featuring again as on
e of the biggest events on the UCI
Asia Tour calendar.