“We need to significantly grow the number of British Cycling members living in Scotland, in turn growing the voice of Scottish Cycling”
The first quarter of the year has already seen plans implemented and the calendar for 2016 is well underway with many of our new and improved Scottish National Series events and the Scottish National Olympic TT Championships having taken place.
One of our flagship events, the Youth Tour of Scotland, took place at the beginning of April. The event has continued to grow year on year; so much so, we have started to attract National and International teams to Scotland from Belgium, Ireland, Wales, Isle of Man and many of the English regions coming to compete against Scotland’s youth.
We were proud to have regional teams competing under Scottish Cycling, a stepping stone for talented young cyclists and a chance to be recognised in their governing body’s regional jersey – they can now go back to their clubs and become role models, inspiring more talent rising up through the ranks.
Youth riders are the future of our sport and an integral part of our clubs and our Coach Education team continues to work hard to upskill coaches, to help retain riders and to raise the bar on Youth development.
This is an exciting year for Scotland with the Pearl Izumi Tour Series coming to both Motherwell and Edinburgh mid-May, the Fort William UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in June and the Tour of Britain Grand Depart opening stage in Glasgow in September. In addition to these fantastic events, we have a mass participation Sky Ride event and a proposed UCI Track World Cup coming to Scotland in November. We hope these are more than just events; we want to inspire and engage new audiences and raise the profile of our sport.
Planning for the Glasgow 2018 European Championships continues and already features legacy plans in the form of an Olympic standard International BMX track at Knightswood Park. The Championships will build on the success of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and we will work with our clubs, officials and volunteers to make sure we are at the heart of this major event.
In terms of creating a lasting legacy, we are in the process of developing a new eight year UK-wide strategy with British and Welsh Cycling to start in 2017. We are confident that a replacement for Sky will be found and on this basis, we have negotiated a significant investment for grassroots development and recreational cycling in Scotland.
One of our key priorities is to create strong financial stability and to do this we need to significantly grow the number of British Cycling members living in Scotland, in turn growing the voice of Scottish Cycling. We need to reach out to our clubs who are an integral part of the sport to help us in doing this.
In addition to working to improve communications with our members and clubs, we have been focusing on the governance of Scottish Cycling. This includes a review, carried out by the Board of Directors which Chair, Kathy Gilchrist, will be in a position to make an announcement on shortly. This will include confirming the appointment of two new Directors to fill the remaining two vacancies on the Board.
Our new Board and Committee structure is making good progress and continues to focus on a number of key projects and improvements. We have launched the Scottish Cycling Events Strategy 2016-2020 that was created at the end of last year – this will give us a new direction and help us to develop discipline specific events plans and identify how we can support Event Organisers and clubs in developing and delivering events. We continue to commit to reviewing the levy system over the coming year and will consider various recommendations for the long term.
And as for the big one this year, the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, we will be behind the Great Britain Cycling Team the whole way and hope to have as many Scottish athletes, officials and volunteers representing us as possible!
On behalf of Scottish Cycling, thank you for your continued support. We welcome your feedback and comments.
I would like wish you the best of luck in the year ahead, keep cycling.