Silver lining for cycling during Covid-19 pandemic

There has been a rise in cycling in Malaysia recently and Covid-19 has not slowed it down.

In fact, former cyclist Fazlan ‘Faz’ Adhili Mustafa Kamar who rode professionally for Cinelli Chrome team, said sales had been good even before the Movement Control Order (MCO).

“It’s been a crazy year but we keep going. The good news is cycling is booming. In fact, sales doubled when CMCO (Conditional MCO) came into effect (on May 4),” said Fazlan, who runs the Plan A outlet in Bukit Jelutong.

“This rise in cycling has also created a whole ecosystem for small businesses like roadside stalls, grocery stores and even petrol stations along the cycling routes.”

Fazlan said he is not worried Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya are back under CMCO until Oct 27.

This is because, under the guidelines issued by the National Security Council (NSC), sports and recreational activities are allowed with restrictions – the activities must be done individually and must not involve more than 10 people.

They must also be conducted in open areas and any such activity must be in compliance with the rules set by local authorities. This includes obtaining the required permission to use public facilities. Contact sports are not allowed.

A representative from Funsportz Sdn Bhd, a purveyor and distributor of quality products for the great outdoors, sports and travel also said it has experienced a jump in bicycle sales.

“Yes, bicycle sales have been up this year. It picked up during the last CMCO but then had a slight drop.

“Sales have been up and down since then but generally we are doing better this year,” said the sales and marketing representative.

Funsportz also has GoPro products and sales of the GoPro Hero 9 that was launched last month, is selling well.

“GoPro products usually do well but the GoPro Hero 9 did very well in the first few weeks.”

Here’s the round-up of The News Normal today.

ISTANA NEGARA POSTPONES MEETINGS WITH POLITICIANS

Istana Negara has postponed meetings with DAP’s secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and Amanah president Mohamad Sabu.

In a joint statement, Lim said he was to have met Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah today and Mat Sabu on Oct 21.

The duo said they were notified by the Agong’s private secretary yesterday that both sessions had been postponed.

Umno president Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi who was scheduled to meet the Agong tomorrow also said his audience had been postponed to a later date.

NO DATA LEAKAGES BY AIRASIA

The Personal Data Protection Department says there are no leakages and selling of personal data by AirAsia. The department said it was satisfied with the explanation given by the airliner.

This follows reports of the budget carrier allegedly selling personal data to American firms.

MCMC: MALAYSIANS READY FOR DIGITAL ID

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission received over 35,000 responses from the public on the development of the National Digital Identity (NDID) Framework.

The outcome of the public consultation found that 97 per cent of the respondents believe NDID will facilitate the ease of identification and verification process with the majority of respondents showing interest in using it.

The respondents also agreed NDID has the potential to minimise the overall cost for the identity verification process. The results from the public consultations will be included in the development of the NDID framework.

HIGH TIME FOR MALAYSIANS TO FULLY EMBRACE LOW-TOUCH ECONOMY

The concept of Low-Touch economy is not new to Malaysians who have already adapted to the digital lifestyle pre-Covid-19 era.

It is, however, high time for businesses to fully embrace the model in moving forward.

DR ZULKIFLI RECOVERS FROM COVID-19

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri says he has recovered from Covid-19 and has been discharged.

Sharing the news via Twitter, Zulkifli said the Health Ministry has advised him to rest at home until the Conditional Movement Control Order ends.

KHAIRUL IDHAM EYES PODIUM AT ARAGON MOTORCYCLE GRAND PRIX

Khairul Idham Pawi and John McPhee of Petronas Sprinta Racing are hoping to get on the Moto3 podium in the Aragon Motorcycle Grand Prix this weekend.

Khairul Idham has fond memories of the Aragon circuit, as it was the scene of his world championship debut in 2015.

“There are a lot of fast corners at Aragon and there aren’t as many places that require hard braking as we’ve had in recent races,” said Khairul Idham.

“It’s got a great mixture of fast and slow corners. It’s going to be important to set lap times with other riders, to utilise the slipstream. It’s not an easy circuit so we will have to see what happens.”

Separately, Petronas Yamaha SRT’s MotoGP pairing of Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli is also confident of doing well in Spain.