Eritrean neo pro Merhawi Kudus is one of MTN-Qhubeka’s latest signings and is an exciting prospect for the 2014 season. Kudus started cycling at the age of 14 and shone in the junior category in Eritrea, even though he competed in road races on a mountain bike. His potential was quickly recognised by the World Cycling Centre and he was invited to train at Potchesfroom (South Africa). In 2012, aged just 18 he gave the world a glimpse of his huge potential and recuperative abilities at the UCI rated Tour of Rwanda. He won the opening stage and rode consistently in the company of top professional riders including Anthony Charteau (Europcar), Adrien Petit (Cofidis) and Andrea Palini (Lampre-Merida) to eventually finished 6th overall. Merhawi Kudus spent the 2013 race season honing his considerable cycling talent at the UCI World Cycling Centre in Switzerland.
Frédéric Magné, Director of the World Cycling Centre, expressed his satisfaction at Kudus’s move to a professional team:“Merhawi fully deserves a professional contract. He is an extremely talented athlete and a nice, well-balanced guy, but above all he is a champion who wants to win.”
Douglas Ryder, MTN-Qhubeka Team Principal, said : “Merhawi is a young rider but has shown maturity and ability beyond his years. African cycling is in a great place with Louis Meintjes finishing second in the Under-23 road race at the UCI World Championships and Merhawi finishing fifteenth in the same event.”
2014 Results – Click through to see video footage (where available)