British Cycling has had its best ever year and is chuffed to bits about it. And why shouldn’t it be? Theirs really is a fantastic success story that I think we’re sometimes too familiar with to fully appreciate. Membership has doubled since London 2012 and it’s hard to believe that it has grown by more than 85,000 in just nine years.
As BC celebrate passing the 100,000-member milestone it has gone into statistics meltdown, showing an ever increasing upward trajectory that’s the envy of every other sports body in the country. Indeed, its success is so great, there’s plenty of positive stuff hidden below the headlines.
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I’m particularly impressed that some 400,000 riders have been helped by Go-Ride coaches and club volunteers. Also, that Sky Ride participation is up 40 per cent in the last two years with more than 100,000 entries spread over the 14 Big Ride events. Combined, these two figures show that BC is far from peaking. There’s another whole generation of riders and bike racers out there that BC is pulling in and training up.
These are the facts that back up BC president Bob Howden’s boast that cycling is now one of Britain’s best-loved sports. Of course it is and bike riding is set to grow and grow.
What’s the next target? When will BC hit 250,000? It’s coming, it’s only a question of when.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly
Bob Howden, president of British Cycling, announces a 'hugely successful' 12 months for the governing body, with international success driving
Membership of British Cycling has now exceeded 100,000