50 Years Of British Cycling - The Seventies

50 Years Of British Cycling - The Seventies


50 Years Of British Cycling News

We've dipped into the archives to provide you with a whistle-stop tour of just some of the headline news from the 50 years since the British Cycling Federation was formed, in 1959. It's not an exhaustive list by any means, but gives a flavour of the great performances and significant events during a half century that saw the face of cycling change forever.

Part 2 - The Seventies

Images: PA

The seventies began with Hugh Porter at his peak, with three world Pursuit titles in four years, a glorious conclusion to his career. On the Road, Barry Hoban carved out a fine reputation as an opportunist sprinter and went on to hold the record number of stage wins in the Tour de France by a British rider - a record recently broken by Mark Cavendish. The Tour also visited this country in 1974 for a rather strange stage along the Plymouth bypass - the fans weren't bothered, though, and turned up in their tens of thousands. In the Olympics, it was the GB Team Pursuiters who made the biggest impression, establishing the country's heritage in the event, with bronze medals in Munich and Montreal.

A classic Milk Race shot from the seventies


  • The World Road and Track Championships are held is Leicester. Les West finishes 4th in the pro Men's race.
  • Hugh Porter wins his second World Pursuit title.
  • The 9th Commonwealth Games are held in Edinburgh.


  • Manchester hosts the national Cyclo-Cross Championships


  • The GB quartet wins a bronze medal in the Team Pursuit at the Munich Olympics
  • Hugh Porter wins his third World Pursuit title in Marseille


  • Crash hats became compulsory for BCF road events as well as closed circuit and track racing.
  • The World Cyclo Cross Championships take place at Crystal Palace, London
  • Barry Hoban wins two stages of the Tour de France
  • Hugh Porter wins his fourth World Pursuit title in San Sebastian


  • The Tour de France visits the UK for a stage in Plymouth and Barry Hoban wins the 13th stage

Barry Hoban leads the UK stage of the 1974 Tour de France - the icecream devotees seem unmoved!


  • The UK's first purpose built road cycling circuit is opened at Eastway in East London
  • Barry Hoban wins the 8th stage of the Tour de France


  • GB quartet wins a bronze medal in the Team Pursuit at the Montreal Olympics
  • Bill Nickson is the first British winner of the Milk Race for 9 years


  • The 1977 Milk Race is won by Russian amateur Said Gusseinov, beginning a 10 year domination of the event by overseas riders, mainly from Eastern Block countries.


  • Robert Millar wins the National Amateur Road Race Championships, aged 19


  • Jim Hendry becomes the first full time BCF Director of Racing (National Coach)

Our look back at the last 50 years is not intended to be an exhaustive list of events and performances, but a flavour of  a half century that saw the face of cycling change forever. If you would like to share your memories of the period with us, please send them to editor@britishcycling.org.uk - we'll publish the best.