Record numbers of cyclists took to the traffic-free streets of London for the Mayor of London's Sky Ride.
Eighty five thousand took part in the event, set in the centre of the city. The Sky Ride was the third in London this year, following Ealing and Redbridge. Sky Rides have also taken place up and down the UK, including in Glasgow.
The roll call of famous names taking part included Mayor of London Boris Johnson, cycling olympian Chris Hoy, model and actress Kelly Brook and riders from Team Sky.
The extended 15km route took in iconic sights like the Tower of London, St Paul's Cathedral and Buckingham Palace.
“The sight of hordes of cyclists pedalling their way along traffic free roads past some of London’s most glorious landmarks, and in the midst of a truly carnival atmosphere brought joy to my heart," said Boris Johnson. "We are bringing a cycle revolution to the streets of the capital and I am sure that today we persuaded thousands more Londoners that pedal power is the way to go.”
Four-time Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy added: “Seeing the Capital’s streets traffic-free with so many people enjoying a day out cycling together is a great experience for everybody. Getting the opportunity to cycle past Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament was something extra special, this was my third year at the London event and every year so far has topped the last.
"The best part of these events is that it doesn't matter if you're a novice or a more experienced rider they have something for all ages and abilities. I’m hoping that everyone who took part will continue to cycle and enjoy all the fun and benefits it brings.”
Sky Ride ambassador Kelly Brook commented: “Having taken part in the Mayor of London’s Sky Ride last year, it was hard to believe how this year could have been bigger or better but today has been fantastic. It’s been amazing to see families on their bikes having fun together, exploring London in a unique way with a range of amazing entertainment along the way. All this and getting to cycle next to Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy."
Sky chief exec Jeremy Darroch said: “It’s been really inspiring to see so many people, old and young, and of all abilities, out on their bikes enjoying themselves. The Mayor of London’s Sky Ride has been a big event over the last two years but the turn out today has been fantastic and I hope this ride, along with all the others this summer, will motivate people to get back on their bikes, cycling regularly.”
The event is being claimed as the biggest mass participation cycling event ever to take place in the UK, reports Road.cc.