Ng Yong Li is one of the local riders with Johor Avanti Pro Cycling.
PONTIAN: Malaysia will have another professional cycling team when Johor Avanti Pro Cycling register with the International Cycling Union (UCI) in September.
Following in the footsteps of Terengganu Cycling, who were registered as a continental team in 2010, Johor Avanti look to feature in the Asia Tour calendar next year, with Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) as the main highlight.
Team director Datuk Mohd Al Khafiz Zainal said that besides having Johor riders, they will also employ foreign riders to strengthen the team next year.
“We have this vision to give Johor riders a platform to ride at a higher level. We have seen in certain races that they could beat national trainees but their pathway to a higher level looks uncertain.
“Through the team, we could have our own riders going for the bigger stage,” said Khafiz.
The team were launched on Tuesday on the sidelines of the LTdL Stage Six finish in Pontian.
“We have attracted cyclists from Australia like Paul Van der Ploeg and Chris Jory, and Sergey Kuzmin from Kazakhstan to ride with us next year. We also have local riders like Ng Yong Li and Fakaruddin Daud,” said Khafiz.
The team plan to have training bases in Ghent, Belgium and Bandung.