Glasgow has today been unveiled as the first-ever host of a UCI World Championships that will bring together 13 separate disciplines in what promises to be a festival of cycling in 2023.
The ‘mega event’ is a departure from the existing calendar that sees the events spread throughout the year, and the UCI’s intention is that it will be repeated in a different location every four years.
Here are the 13 events that will be brought together in the debut edition of what promises to be a quadrennial celebration of cycling in all its forms.
UCI Road World Championships
UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships
UCI Track Cycling World Championships presented by Tissot
UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships
UCI Mountain Bike Cross-country World Championships presented by Mercedes-Benz
UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Championships presented by Mercedes-Benz
UCI Mountain Bike Marathon World Championships
UCI Mountain Bike Cross Country Eliminator World Championships
UCI Trials World Championships
UCI BMX Freestyle Park World Championships
UCI BMX World Championships
UCI Indoor Cycling World Championships
UCI Gran Fondo World Championships
The Scottish Government, EventScotland, British Cycling, UK Sport and Glasgow City Council are partnering with the UCI to stage the event.
UCI president David Lappartient, who was at today's launch in the Emirates Arena – previously, the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome – said: "I am delighted that the UCI has today awarded the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships to Glasgow and Scotland.
"The creation and the implementation of this event was one of the commitments I had made during my campaign for UCI presidency and I am proud to have fulfilled it.
He said the event "will uniquely showcase our sport and its different disciplines on an international stage.
"Glasgow and Scotland have a great deal of experience in the organisation of major sporting events, notably multi-sports, such as the first edition of the European Sports Championships that it organised in 2018.
“The award of an event such as this represents a wonderful opportunity to encourage cycling as a form of daily mobility, ensuring a sustainable future for both urban and rural areas and their populations," Lappartient added.
"Glasgow and Scotland share this vision and will leverage these Championships to encourage this on their territory.”
It’s the latest sporting coup for Scotland’s largest city, which in 2014 hosted the Commonwealth Games – memorable, in cycling terms, not only for Geraint Thomas’s road race victory despite a late puncture, but also for Scottish track rider Chris Pritchard climbing up the boards of the velodrome to propose (successfully) to his girlfriend.
The previous year, the city had welcomed the British national championships, where Mark Cavendish and Lizzie Deignan won the men’s and women’s road races, respectively.
Just last summer, Glasgow hosted the cycling events on the first occasion that European Championships were held together across a range of sports, the city staging the multi-sport event in partnership with the German capital, Berlin.
Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish Government’s cabinet secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, said: “As the first ever host of this event, Scotland will cement its position as a leader and innovator in the planning and delivery of major sporting events.
"It builds upon the successes of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, the 2014 Ryder Cup and last year’s European Championships.
“Our overall aim is for Scotland to become one of Europe’s top cycling nations with cycling firmly embedded across Scotland as the favoured way to travel to school and work, as an enjoyable leisure activity and an efficient way to improve health.”
Councillor David McDonald, chair of Glasgow Life and depute leader of Glasgow City Council, commented: “This is a huge announcement and achievement for the city.
"Being the first ever hosts of this event – which will become the pinnacle of the UCI International Calendar – will cement Glasgow and Scotland’s position as a worldwide leader and innovator in the planning and delivery of major sporting events.
“Our city is one of the top five sporting cities in the world, and events like the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships will help us continue to climb these rankings and realise our big aspirations.
"This event will be the biggest event staged in the city, and indeed the country, in the coming years – and we cannot wait to welcome athletes, officials, and spectators from around the world to Glasgow," he added.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.