Mayor of London announces RideLondon Olympic legacy event
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Friday, August 10, 2012

Mayor of London announces RideLondon Olympic legacy event

by Ben Atkins at 11:39 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Olympics
 
Double gold medallist Laura Trott present as UCI one-day race to be part of weekend cycling festival

laura trott,boris johnsonMayor of London, Boris Johnson, has announced the creation of the RideLondon, event as part of the Olympic legacy, which will include the highest-ranked one-day race on the British calendar. The RideLondon Classic will take place on the weekend of August 3rd, 2013, and will take in much of the course around Surrey used in the Olympic Games road race. Exact details are to be announced, but it will be supported by a number of mass participation rides, including a family event that will take in an eight-mile closed road circuit around some of the British capital’s most famous landmarks, and a 100-mile road ride open to 20,000 amateur riders.

“This year London has been the place to be and yet again this amazing city has proved its expertise in hosting major world class sporting and cultural events,” said Johnson at the events’ presentation. “Our challenge is to ensure that 2012 is just the start, not the end of the benefits of hosting the Games.

“We must create long lasting opportunities for the Olympic Park and the capital, which will showcase London to the world, attract more visitors, create more jobs and support the economy,” he continued.  “We also need to capitalise on the incredible achievements of Team GB’s Olympic cyclists whose superhuman efforts will inspire thousands more Londoners to take to two wheels. I urge every Londoner and cycle fanatics from all over the country, if not the world, to mark the weekend of 3 August 2013 in their diaries for what I believe will become one of the world’s number one cycling events.”

Also present at the launch was double gold medallist Laura Trott, who won the women’s Omnium as well as being part of Great Britain’s victorious Pursuit team. The 20-year-old, who comes from Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, just ten miles from the Olympic Park, lent her support to the events.

"It's been amazing the way the British public have really got behind Team GB and cycling in general during the last few weeks,” she said. “I’ve been completely blown away by how many people have come out to support us. The crowd noise in the Velodrome was something I will never forget.

“It’s great to think we may have inspired people to get on their bikes and RideLondon is a great opportunity for the public to get out and join us on the roads,” she added. “Cycling has always been a huge part of my family’s life and I hope that having watched the Games lots more people will be encouraged to have a go.”

The events will be jointly presented by the organisers of the Tour of Britain and the London Marathon and will start from the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and finish where the Olympic races finished on the Mall. Online registration is already open on www.RideLondon.co.uk for riders to register interest in the events. In addition to the UCI race, there will also be a city centre grand prix for elite women, juniors and hand cycles.

All of the events will look to capitalise on the success of Great Britain’s cyclists in this summer’s Olympic Games, where Team GB dominated racing in the velodrome once again, as well as Bradley Wiggins taking the men’s time trial, and Lizzie Armitstead taking silver in the women’s road race.

“The Launch of RideLondon today is further proof that British Cycling’s Olympic legacy is already in place,” said Brian Cookson, British Cycling president and UCI management committee member. “Like the rest of the country I have celebrated the achievements of Laura Trott, Bradley Wiggins and Sir Chris Hoy, not just because they have succeeded during a wonderful summer for British cycle sport, but because they and the rest of the British Cycling team are inspiring people across the country to get active.

“Success in the Tour de France and the Olympics has seen membership surge, seeing 250 people a day join British Cycling. There are over 160,000 more people cycling once a week or more than was the case six months ago. RideLondon demonstrates there is now an unprecedented, mainstream demand for cycling events in this country. And our colleagues at the UCI know that British Cycling can be relied upon to produce not just competitors of the highest level, but also superbly organised events for cyclists of all levels of ability.

“None of this is a happy accident but the product of years of hard work,” he added. “What we are seeing are the fruits of a strategy British Cycling has been pursuing for over a decade. And the success of our sport at both elite and participation levels is a great return on the efforts of so many of the people involved in our sport who have turned that strategy into action. Having been involved with the creation of RideLondon we look forward to this annual events first delivery next year with great anticipation.”

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