Just how much worse will things need to be before British Cycling finally reacts? The organisation’s troubled Premier Calendar series was dealt another hefty blow at the weekend, when the police called off the opening event – the Bikeline Two Day – during the second stage.
This follows the cancellation of the Archer Grand Prix and then the Tour of Wessex.
The week had begun more encouragingly with Halfords announced as the series sponsor. “Thanks to Halfords we can improve the support we offer to race organisers,” said BC. Well it’s definitely long overdue, but if support isn’t forthcoming very soon there won’t be anything left for Halfords to spend its money on.
It’s crazy. The cash has been rolling in over the past six months. Last summer Sky Sports pledged an undisclosed figure, thought to be tens of millions for UK cycling, then came £24.3 million from Sport England, and now there’s another undisclosed sum from Halfords.
These cancellations are an unacceptable state of affairs, and individual organisers urgently need support from their governing body at national level, before racing is forced off the open road.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly magazine