Adrien Niyonshuti (World Cup race in La Bresse, 2012)
|Full name||Adrien Niyonshuti|
2 January 1987 |
Eastern Province, Rwanda
|Height||1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|Weight||68 kg (150 lb; 10.7 st)|
|Current team||MTN Qhubeka|
|Tour of Rwanda, 2006 and 2008|
Infobox last updated on
Adrien Niyonshuti (born 2 January 1987 in Eastern Province, Rwanda) is a professional bicycle racer for South African UCI Continental team MTN Qhubeka. Although he survived, six of Niyonshuti's brothers were killed in the Rwandan Genocide of 1994. Niyonshuti began riding a bicycle given to him by his uncle as a teenager, when he came to the attention of former professional cyclist Jonathan Boyer in 2006 during the first Wooden Bike Classic. After riding for the Rwanda national cycling team, Niyonshuti secured a professional contract with Team MTN Energade, beginning in the 2009 professional season.
Niyonshuti began amateur cycling at the age of 16 in his native Rwanda. In 2006, he came to the attention of a former professional cyclist, Jonathan Boyer. The first American cyclist to compete in the Tour de France, Boyer was working in Rwanda on a project to import cargo bicycles for coffee farmers. Boyer also assumed the role of coach for the Rwandan national cycling team, and recruited Niyonshuti to race. Niyonshuti had good initial results in local races such as the Tour of Rwanda, in which he finished in the top ten five years in a row and won in 2006 and 2008.
In 2008, Niyonshuti attended the Africa Continental Centre Training Camp in South Africa, where he was offered a contract by Douglas Ryder, the directeur sportif of UCI Continental Team MTN Energade. He started his first UCI European road race in August 2009 with his participation in the 2009 Tour of Ireland, becoming the first Rwandan cyclist to ride in the European professional peloton. Niyonshuti qualified to represent Rwanda in the cross-country mountain bike race during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
- Team Rwanda (2009). "Adrien Niyonshuti". Retrieved 22 August 2009.
- Ryder Cycling (2009). "Adrien Niyonshuti". Retrieved 22 August 2009.
- Delany, Ben (2009). "Rwandan rider Niyonshuti faces a new future at the Tour of Ireland". Velonews. 20 August 2009.
- The New Times (2008). "Niyonshuti bags Frw 0.7m". Retrieved 22 August 2009.
- "Genocide survivor Niyonshuti to make Olympic debut". Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- The Cycling Website (2008). "Adrien Niyonshuti wins the Tour de Rwanda 2008". 25 August 2008.