Delegates and members of the International Cycling Union (UCI) and Cycling South Africa, as well as Durban Municipality Sports Department members and managers met to discuss the sporting opportunities that cycling brings to the Durban community at the Moses Mabhida Stadium earlier today. President of the UCI, Mr Brian Cookson, outlined the UCI’s ideas and visions of globalising the sport of cycling.
When chatting about the opportunities and possible future for cycling in Durban, Mr Cookson said: “I am very impressed with the city of Durban. It’s a beautiful place with a great climate. I think Durban can host all sorts of really good top-quality cycling events across all of the disciplines. I would like to see some road racing here – perhaps a WorldTour event eventually – maybe even the World Championships one year in the future. The track here is a great track with potential for more international events.
“I think we can also look at bringing more mountain bike, BMX, Trials and perhaps our new Urban World Championships, which combines BMX Freestyle with Mountain bike Eliminator. All of those things I think Durban has potential for, as well as the rest of South Africa.”
Cycling South Africa President, Mr William Newman, said that Durban is certainly one of the cities that the National Federation can work with in terms of creating more opportunities for riders.
He said: “The globalisation of the sport idea is about getting it into new areas. The Durban city officials are very excited to hear this, and there are already partnerships in Europe who are keen to get involved.”
Mr Newman chatted about the recent news about the 2022 Commonwealth Games no longer being held in Durban, and said that although it will be held in a different country, this will not stop the development and nurturing of riders to ensure that they are fully prepared for the Games, regardless of where the Games are held.
“The plans for development of the city won’t stop either. Providing and improvement of facilities is still very much needed. Cycling South Africa will continue to work with the City of Durban to ensure that cycling is at the forefront of their programmes. We continue to work with them to show them the benefits of the sport of cycling,” he said.
Photo from left: Cycling South Africa general Manager Mike Bradley; UCI International Relations Manager Pascale Schyns; UCI President Brian Cookson; Senior Manager Sports Development and Recreation of eThekwini Municipality Sports and Recreation Sandra Khathi; Cycling SA President William Newman; eThekwini Municipality Sport and Recreation Development Manager Teddy Adams; President of the UCI Track Cycling Commission and Czech Cycling Federation President Dr Marian Stetina.
Photo credit: CyclingSA/Andrew McFadden