British cycling was the one we looked up to – now it sounds like it has stumbled into macho time warp – Telegraph.co.uk
Again this comes as a shock, and a disappointment, 100 days before the Rio Olympics and Paralympics. A beacon sport that all others could look up to and learn from has lost its way, which is not the same as saying its problems are incurable. Anyone who persists in thinking the kind of terminology and discrimination we are hearing about is simply motivational banter is a menace to a great sport.
A personal memory is of Chris Hoy describing a glowing future for cycling, a democratic and health-improving activity that has been booming. He spoke of schoolchildren hiring bikes and watching Olympic athletes spin round the track before having a go themselves.
“There are velodromes now in Glasgow, Newport, Manchester and London,” Hoy boasted back in 2012. “Geographically, you see within an hour’s travel how many people that reaches out to. And obviously people riding on the streets and on BMX.”
When he said this, the country was still giddy from events in the London Olympic velodrome. Wiggins was the mod king of the London streets. British cycling had earned the country’s love. It was the best-run of all sports. Now, it will have to correct itself, and apply its own code of conduct to restore the faith of those who might now wonder whether a velodrome is a nice place to be.