This time last year Chris Hoy used the high-altitude velodrome in La Paz, Bolivia, to break the 500m world record by over a second. His attempt to secure the kilo record failed by just five thousandths of a second.
During his time in Bolivia Hoy saw at first hand the differences between the opportunities available to young cyclists in Great Britain and those open to cyclists in one of the poorest countries in South America.
He asked DHL, which had shipped 1000 kilograms of equipment to La Paz for the record attempt, to help in some way. DHL said it would make available a container – and if Hoy could fill it, the company would ship it.
Hoy secured 22 track bikes from Dolan Cycles, the company who builds his own track bikes. Helmets, tools, shoes and spares all came courtesy of Halfords, who in March announced their sponsorship of the Great Britain Cycling Team. Cane Creek supplied a set of carbon fibre race wheels. The goodies were packed by young cyclists from the Manchester Velodrome, all of whom have attended the DHL Sprint School.
The supplies mean that children in La Paz will be able to turn up in nothing more than the clothes they are wearing and experience what it’s like to ride the track.
Hoy said: “I felt it was unfair so many of these kids lived near this amazing track but would never get the chance to ride it on a proper bike or with proper safety equipment.
“After my experience at the velodrome in La Paz I really wanted to give something back to this amazing place, and with the help of DHL, Dolan, Halfords and Cane Creek, that’s exactly what I’ve been able to do.”