Olympic Games organisers LOCOG, which last month revealed that it planned to increase spectator numbers at the Box Hill section of the Olympic road race route, is reported to be giving strong consideration to charging spectators for admission to the enclosure.
The Daily Telegraph says that LOCOG is drawing up the pricing structure for entrance to the restricted segment of the Box Hill circuit, which lies on land owned by the National Trust and will be ridden nine times in the men’s race and twice in the women’s event.
Admission to that area for the test event last August was free to those who had obtained a special wristband, and news that LOCOG plans to charge for admission is likely to provoke anger and disappointment among fans.
It had been assumed that other than the finish area on The Mall, the road races would be entirely free-to-view events, but a LOCOG spokeswoman insisted that was not the case, telling The Daily Telegraph: “We have never said it would be free, we have always been ticketing that part of the route to limit the numbers of people in that area and we are looking whether we will charge or not.”
Meanwhile the newspaper also reports that a dozen companies have applied to organise the two-day London cycling festival, the annual Olympic legacy event that will debut in 2013, and which will include a pro road race as well as a sportive that appears likely to follow much of the Olympic road race route.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.