PESHAWAR: Ali Ilyas from Karachi won the first phase of first Commissioner ‘Tour de Waziristan’ Cycle Race jointly organized by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Culture and Tourism Authority, Commissioner Dera Ismail Khan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Cycling Association.
The race was inaugurated from Dera Ismail Khan where Pakistan Army hosted the opening ceremony. On this occasion, Commissioner Dera Ismail Khan Amir Latif inaugurated the race. The first Tour de Waziristan cycle race is being held in three phases.
The first stage of the race was held from Dera Ismail Khan to Tank district in Ali Ilyas from Baikistan Cycling Academy Karachi secured the first position. The third and final phase will start from Gomal Zam Dam and will end at Wana in South Waziristan which includes a 52 km long mountain track. The first phase ceremony was held at Captain Sikandar Shaheed Camp Tank with Deputy Commissioner Tank Kabir Afridi as the special guest who presented cash of Rs.5,000 and shield to the winning cyclist, Ali Ilyas.
Addressing the inaugural Amir Latif, the Commissioner said that this race will now be held every year in which besides these teams, players from other areas would also be included next year. He said now there is complete peace in these districts and tourism and sports activities are in full swing. A tableau was also presented by the school students on the occasion of the opening ceremony while traditional horse dance and dance performances were also performed. During the race, a large number of spectators were present on both sides of the road while on reaching Tank, spectators and the Pakistan Army threw flowers at the cyclists.
The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Culture and Tourism Authority said that more than 50 cyclists from across Pakistan are participating the rally. The officials said that race will be completed in three phases by covering a distance of 189km. The officials added that the purpose of the event is to promote tourism in tribal districts of the province.