British Cycling’s 2016 annual report has described engaging underrepresented groups in cycling as a priority within its 2017 to 2025 strategy.
Dubbing the partnership with Sky for a national recreational cycling campaign a “stand-out behavioural change programme,” British Cycling’s report spoke of a growing workforce of volunteers that make events like the Sky Ride a success. Through Sky Ride, the Breeze program for developing grassroots women’s cycling and the development of online network Ride Social, British Cycling estimates that it has engaged 1.7 million more people in increasing their time cycling.
Having passed a £10 million investment milestone earlier this year with funding assistance for a £5 million closed loop in Leeds, the organisation says that traffic free environments to learn cycle skills are crucial to the UK becoming a “cycling nation”.
“To achieve this, British Cycling invests in the construction of new cycling facilities and the development of existing ones, in order to create a national network of facilities which cater for people of all ages and abilities,” says the report.
British Cycling’s target of tutoring 2,000,000 kids by 2020 via the GoRide program is described as “on track”. Half a million kids have been taught cycling basics in the past year, with over 100,000 of these opportunities delivered by Go-Ride coaches and a further 400,000 by volunteer coaches in 300 Go-Ride clubs.
Ian Drake, British Cycling’s chief executive said: “In September we announced the launch of a new partnership with our new lead partner, HSBC UK. This exciting new era will see HSBC UK support our work across every level of the sport with the aim of benefiting every family across Britain. The partnership will be closely aligned to the government’s new Sporting Future strategy which sets out physical wellbeing, mental wellbeing, individual development and economic development as measures which sporting success will be defined by in the future.”
On disability cycling, there are now six hubs across the country offering coaching opportunities, with funding from British Cycling delivered to develop the York Sports Village and Odd Down Cycle Circuit’s offerings.
With some 4,000 competitive events now held each year, a newly established Apprentice stage replaces the ‘talent team’ and is now increasing Great Britain Cycling Team support to riders aged 14 to 16.
Fundamental to taking the organisation’s future strategy is a £15 million commitment from the UK Government that will be invested in new cycle sport facilities, something which the organisation says will continue to “transform the sport at grassroots level.”
Key figures from the 2016 report:
- 125,000 members are now on board with British Cycling – the highest number to date. Half of these members describe themselves as leisure riders only.
- £10 million invested in cycling facilities since 2009.
- 52,000 tickets sold to the UCI Track Cycling World Championships. Nine of 12 sessions sold out. Viewing figures peaked at 2,000,000 across the BBC and Eurosport.
- 15,000 cyclists took part in Velothon Wales.
- Record crowds watched Rachel Atherton win at the UCI MTB World Cup.
- The British BMX Championships attracted its largest entry in recent years, with 1,200 people taking part.
- The final year of BC and Sky’s partnership saw the one millionth Sky Rider take part in traffic-free city events.
- A dozen Sky Ride events took place across the country this year with public brand awareness at 75% awareness and 2.1 million visits to goskyride.com
- The online British Cycling Event Management System continues to provide a valuable service for our riders and organisers with more than 75% of all events on the calendar now using the system.
- 95% of the 4,000 cycle sport events are delivered by 1,500 volunteer event organisers and 2,700 registered officials, without whom “our sport simply could not function,” says British Cycling.
- The training, development and engagement of officials have resulted in a 25% increase in the number of commissaire roles held.
- Over 4,000 coaches have passed through courses or online webinars, with 1,200 attending 1-3 level courses. These numbers are 14% higher like-for-like over the year prior.
- There has been a 70% increase in female coaches since 2012.
- Some 70% of the British Cycling Team have participated in the Go-Ride program in their youth.