Doesn’t it feel like such a long time ago that we watched our first hopes of a gold medal in the London Olympics fade on the circuits of Box Hill? It even seems like a long time ago since Wiggo crowned a summer he will never forget with his outstanding performance in the time trial and won team GB’s first gold.
Our sportsmen and women have excelled in so many disciplines but our dominance in the cycling really has brought to light what can be achieved with the right grass roots structure, investment and vision.
Cycling - including road, track, mountain biking and BMX - has been thrust onto the British stage and I am so excited to be a part of it. Watching Chris Hoy storm to victory in the keirin and the girls’ clinical execution of USA in the team pursuit made me desperate to give track cycling a shot. We are so lucky in Glasgow to have a national velodrome nearing completion and hopefully there are many people out there that feel the same as I do.
I used to think road biking and track was something out with my reach - it was only for people who could ride for hours on end at very high speeds and, whilst there are plenty of folk that can do this, it really is available to everyone. The Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome opens with the Scottish track cycling championships in October and there is a very fitting fundraising event taking place on the 27 October.
The Braveheart Cycling Fund was set up in 2003 to raise funds to help young Scottish cyclists fulfill their potential and The Real McHoy, as a patron of Braveheart, will be in attendance on the day to help raise money for this wonderful charity. Now is the time to get behind our youngsters, get them involved and share with them the joy of riding a bike! I am delighted that the tagline of the 2012 Games appears, for the moment, to have been well and truly fulfilled.
The London 2012 Olympics have been an outstanding success and not just in terms of the achievement of our athletes. A strange thing has happened in this country over the last few weeks - a feeling of unity and optimism that has long since been lacking in recent years. For once we were shown to the world as a nation that can get things right and I really do hope that I feel this proud to be British for a long time to come.