This is one of the largest cycling event in Malaysia or it is better known as CFAL (pronounce as C-FAL). This year was the 7th year they hold this event and the number of participants grew exponentially. There were people coming from all over the place, so it was not only Penangnites who joined. The number of participants this year was 4500 and the event fee was RM100/person which was raised from RM80 last year.
This year route was cut short by 4-5km due to the road construction at Batu Maung area. Total distance was 76.8km based on my Strava record.
As usual, with that kind number of people in the tiny island with tiny roads, there were bounds to be congested and caused accidents. I saw it with my own eyes there were cyclists fell down or inside the ambulance being taken care of. Safety is no longer there and I was nearly knocked down by a cyclist too. He was too engrossed with his conversation and out of sudden cut into my lane. I had to brake hard as there was no space for me to avoid him. I felt that the event organizer is getting worse each year and they were no longer care about the welfare of the cyclists than just taking profit. I heard that they will increase the number of participants next year. I can’t imagine with that kind of people on the road next time.
There weren’t many water stations for people who needed to refill. As I counted there were only 3 and the 3rd one was at the finishing line. So, there were actually 2 only and 1 of them was hidden somewhere. There wasn’t any banner or direction lead to that water station which was inside a school. Also, the location was dangerous picked as one has to cross the road with incoming traffic from opposite lane. Not only that, that person had to cycle for another 1km to the water station.
I felt the organizer is badly planned and hope that they will do a better job next year. RM450,000 was a lot of money they have taken.
The starting line was too congested and people were waiting along the side road.
Road was too congested that cyclists had to get down and pushed bike.
It was only clear after going up hill.
Waiting for lucky draw.