About a month ago, a gang broke into Zakayo Nderi’s home in Eldoret, ransacked it, took his bicycles and training gear and beat him up. He begged them not to break his legs. They didn’t. Small mercies.
News of the attack stunned us. But really, we should have expected it. Political uncertainty, tribal rivalry and plain thuggery had gripped Eldoret for months. The unrest meant Zakayo and the rest of his team could no longer train outdoors. Nick, their Singaporean manager, had to cancel a trip to Kenya because it was just too risky. We wondered if it was the end of the road for the African cyclists.
Nick’s managed to get him, and three of his teammates, out of the country. Tomorrow, we head to Bangkok for the Tour of Egat. It will be the first time the team competes outside Kenya. Their first overseas race. The first time the world gets to see just how good these guys are. 450 km over four days. They’re psyched. And we can’t wait.