Large-scale bicycle parade held in Minsk

Large-scale bicycle parade held in Minsk

The largest season opening in the cycling history of Belarus was held in Minsk on 30 April. Despite the abundance of bicycle tracks, even car drivers gave the road to the cyclists. Pobediteley Avenue was closed for the sporting event for about two hours. Thousands of bicyclists from different countries took part in the event. Famous athletes and officials participated as well. There were held some competitions.

The event was held in Minsk’s Victory Park. It gathered more than 9,000 bicyclists who raced along Minsk’s streets in a form of a column.

The leading bike rider was the Minister of Sports and Tourism of Belarus.

Alexander Shamko, Minister of Sports and Tourism of the Republic of Belarus:
Such events of informal character may promote the sport. A good mood and physical exercises cultivate love for sport among the younger generation in particular. A lot of families and children have come here.

Andrei Shorets, the mayor of Minsk, participated in this parade as well. He was dressed in sportswear, although it was not obligatory for the bike riders.

A bicycle is a vehicle suitable for everybody, which is why every fourth participant is wearing a skirt, pants, or shoes. Evgeny is not used to riding, he repairs bicycles. The bicycle mechanic has repaired more than one thousand of brake pads and bicycle chains over the years of his work. The most unusual requests come from women.

Evgeny Bychkovsky, bicycle mechanic:
Sometimes, people wind ropes around wheels. They often leave their bikes under the mirror in the corridor, where they comb their hair. If you collect all those hairs after some time, you will be able to make two more wigs.

Women have their own point of view regarding bicycle choice. They think that picking up a model suitable for you is pretty difficult.

Lidia Rybakova, bicycle lover:
When I was buying a bicycle, I was told that all the bikes are the same, but it turned out that the number of stars and wheel size influences the way it is driven. There are mountain bikes and city bikes; I would like to ride a city one today. Riding such a bike you can wear a dress, keep your back straight, and you can put a basket in front of you. This is great.

Mr Matsulevich chose a model for him a long time ago. He has been riding a bicycle for 60 years and can take it to pieces with his eyes closed.

Valery Matsulevich, bicycle lover:
A bicycle is health, good emotions, good aura, and nature. It’s life.

Natalia Tsilinskaya, a multiple world champion and an Olympic medalist, couldn’t but visit such an event, since cycling is her cup of tea. But she did not expect that Minsk residents would support the start of the season in such a big way.

Natalia Tsilinskaya, eight-time cycling world champion, Olympic medalist:
When we were riding along the avenue, I looked back several times, trying to see whether I was followed but I wasn’t. The number of participants will rise year after year, along with the distance and speed.

The bicycle boom in Minsk grows proportionally to the number of main bicycle tracks. They make 27 kilometers in Minsk now. Three hundred bike racks are equipped, and there is more to come. Minsk authorities are planning to build more special tracks.