Watch: Sir Chris Hoy celebrates 100 days until the UCI Cycling World Championships at George Square

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“It’s going to be huge for cycling, it’s going to be huge for Glasgow and Scotland too.”

Six-time Olympic gold medal winner Sir Chris Hoy attended George Square on 25 April to celebrate 100 days until the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships - the biggest event of its kind - set to take place in Glasgow this coming August.

As the square bustled with local cyclists and sporting fans, endurance athlete Jenny Tough and YouTuber Katie Kookaburra rode in to a huge applause, completing a recreation of the first ever bicycle ride - the route of which begins in Dumfries and ends in Glasgow - undertaken in 1842 by Kirkpatrick MacMillan, inventor of the treadle bike.

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“It’s the first time that all the different disciplines in cycling have been brought together so it’s a big deal,” Sir Chris Hoy said.

“It’s going to be huge for cycling, it’s going to be huge for Glasgow and Scotland too.”

Glasgow City Council has plans to build around 270km of cycle routes ahead of the event, taking place 3-13 August. While the implementation is in aid of the competition it also contributes to the authority’s wider plans to expand active travel in the city, reduce car use, and ultimately cut emissions.

The Glasgow BMX Centre, Glasgow Green, the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, the Emirates Arena and George Square will be the main locations used for the races.

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“They’ll be lots to see and do, they’ll be lots of activations all around Glasgow,” said Trudy Lindblade, CEO of the UCI Cycling World Championships.

“It’ll be a great way to get involved, come and support the world cycling championships, come and support your city, and we can showcase Glasgow to the world through the global broadcast.”

During the day’s activities, Hoy and Tough came together with Paralympic Champion Jody Cundy to launch the 23 Million Mile Challenge, an initiative aimed at encouraging members of the public to sign up and contribute to a collective target of 23 million miles cycled across the UK ahead of the big event.

When asked why people who aren’t competitive cyclers should get involved, Sir Chris Hoy said: “Cycling isn’t just for the elite level cyclists who are competing for medals and trying to become world champions.

“Cycling is all ages, all levels of physical ability.

“E-bikes now are opening up cycling to a whole different demographic of people.”

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