DUNGUN: Terengganu's very own velodrome, which has been in the pipeline for close to 10 years, is expected to be ready by next year.
Named after Dungun-born Olympian, the Azizulhasni Awang Velodrome aims to churn out more world cycling champions.
Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said the velodrome, to be built in the cyclist's hometown here, would be modelled after the Roubaix Velodrome in France.
"With the new velodrome and cycling champions like Azizulhasni and Nur Fateha Mustafa, Terengganu can be the home of Malaysian cycling," he said in a ceremony before laying the foundation stone of the velodrome in Kampung Balai Besar on Thursday.
The Azizulhasni Awang Velodrome will be built at a cost of RM12mil and construction is set to begin soon.
"We will make sure this velodrome will not become a white elephant project but to train new talents," he said, adding that youngsters would be provided with free bicycles to try out the sport in the velodrome.
The construction was first mooted by former Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek when he held the post between 2009 and 2013.
Azizulhasni, also known as the Pocket Rocketman, won the bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
He is currently training for the coming Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.
Khairy also announced a RM1mil grant for the state to run cycling programmes and look for new talents.