WHILE the most known cyclist groups in Mindanao are in Cagayan de Oro and Davao, Iligan City boasts its own formidable union of cyclists.
Iligan City’s cycling groups compete in cross-country, endure, downhill, and circuit cycling disciplines.
Iligan City’s ICCE and UCCI
The Iligan City Cycling Enthusiast (ICCE), the umbrella organization of biking clubs in Iligan, hold cycling competitions – local, invitational, and national events – in the hilly terrains of Iligan City such as in Barangays Dalipuga, Tominobo, Pugaan, and Del Carmen.
ICCE was formed in 2010. To unify the biking clubs in Iligan, they started convincing clubs to form into one organization in 2011. Even triathlon groups joined the club. Thus, the Unified Cycling Club of Iligan (UCCI) was founded in 2012.
UCCI received support from a Filipino community in Luxemberg, Philippinesch Aktioun fir den Development, every year. Later on, they also started receiving support from bikers from Ireland and USA.
The group used to only participate in cross-country biking in Iligan City’s mixed terrains, but in 2014, the fad for downhill cycling and endure biking started to rise.
“[Enduro and downhill cycling] is scary, but the millennials found interest in the Discipline’s hops and jumps. People like downhill because of the thrill and excitement from the bike’s constant hoping,” said Rey Mendoza, ICCE president.
Iligan City’s forests and hills are great for endure and downhill cycling events.
Mendoza further said that there are many sponsors for endure cycling events.
Iligan City’s national cycling competitions
UCCI and ICCE also get offers to host such events.
One of the national events the UCCI Iligan organized is the Commencal National Downhill Series on September 2018.
Philippine biking team athletes and international riders travel all the way to Iligan from across the Country to participate in the cycling competitions hosted in Iligan City. Gab Amigo, national athlete, is one of them.
“Ok mu-accommodate ang Iligan, maong magbalik-balik sila (cyclists),” said Jeanalyn Enerio Marzo, UCCI president.
ICCE and UCCI are also training their young bikers aged 17 to 25 years old to compete in national biking events.
In June 2018, they sent delegates to the Philippine National Games (PNG) in Cebu City and Batang Pinoy of the Philippine Sports Commission in Baguio City.
Two of their players bagged silver medals in the PNG.
Arjun Pia, 13 years old, has been participating in motocross events since she was eight years old.
Last year, she almost broke her ribs from an accident in the sport. Her parents planned to make her stop doing sports, however, she insists in coming back to do cycling this time.
“Through this sport, I gain persistence and resistance. In motocross, you don’t get much exercise for your body because you only stir. But in biking, you move your whole body. That’s why my mother prefers that I bike because it is exercise and that it is safe,” Arjun shared.
UCCI and ICCE also hold community services such as their support for the Philippine Army deployed in Marawi City, the Halloween Night Ride on October 31, 2018 where the bikers rode in their Halloween costumes, and their run to the Marawi City Ground Zero on December 16 2018.
They also do community services in schools.
On January 13 and 27, they will hold the UCCI 2019 MTB Enduro Run-Through.