Prior to flying off to cover the 2010 Tour de France for ITV4, Chris Boardman helped his home city of Liverpool celebrate Team Green Britain Bike Week by presenting some of his most precious cycling mementos to the new Museum of Liverpool that opens in 2011.
In a Liverpool Pier Head ceremony in front of the new building last Thursday, Boardman gave curators his iconic Lotus bike, a Tour de France yellow jersey from his first prologue victory in 1994 and a section of the Manchester Velodrome on which he beat the World Hour Record for the second time in 1996.
Boardman said, “They shut the Velodrome in 2007 for resurfacing and kindly gave me the piece of track I crossed when I achieved the hour record. Both the track and the bike represent a significant point in my career, and I’m glad others will be able to enjoy them in the new museum.”
“It’s great to be part of this fantastic project. The building already looks very striking, and I can’t wait to see inside when it opens next year. The achievements of Liverpool and its people have been a massive inspiration to many, including myself, and our sporting success is just one part of the city’s heritage.”
Paul Gallagher, curator of contemporary collecting at National Museums Liverpool said: “Chris is very kindly loaning us three fantastic objects linked to two of the high points in his cycling career, to highlight his place in Liverpool and World sporting history within the Museum of Liverpool.
“Chris is, and always will be, part of British cycling history, and we are extremely proud to be able to recognise his achievements in the Museum of Liverpool using objects which are integral to his personal story, and the sport as a whole.”
Chris Boardman became a household name in 1992 when he achieved a gold medal at the Barcelona Olympics for the 4000m individual pursuit. He went on to break the World Hour record for the first time in 1993 and win the prologue of the 1994 Tour de France with the fastest time ever recorded at an average of 55kph.
After winning Bronze in the men’s individual time trial at the 1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta, Boardman smashed the World Hour record for the second time in Manchester in September that year, breaking it for the third time in 2000 with a time of 49.441km and making a point by doing it on a ‘conventional’ bike to satisfy the new UCI regulations.