Sunday, August 17, 2008

Olympics Success

Here in Nottinghamshire we are basking in the magnificent achievement of "our own" Rebecca Adlington from Mansfield. Two golds and a world record - what an achievement !

The Great Britain squad is seeing success in other fields too, particularly in water sports and in cycling - which has yielded four gold, two silver and two bronze medals so far - all of which we admire and congratulate.

Beeston has had a cycling tradition for many years - both in competition and recreational cycling - and this latest triumph reminds me of past cycling successes in which cyclists from Beeston played a part. For it was Beeston's own Ian Hallam who took Bronze in the 4000 Metre Team Pursuit in both Munich in 1972 and Montreal in 1976. He also took Golds in the Commonwealth Games in 1970 and 1974.

Earlier still, we remember the local cyclist Ray Bootie who rode for a Beeston club and who, in 1956, was the first to break the 100 mile time trial barrier of 4 hours. He too saw success with a Gold Medal in the 1958 Commonwealth Games.

This concentration of local interest and talent in cycling undoubtedly owed much to the cycle shop on Chilwell Road on the corner of Hall Croft. Started and run originally by Arthur Panter, it was then operated from 27 years up to 2000 by another local cycling stalwart, Sid Standard. The advice, equipment, service, focus and enthusiasm it provided to local cyclists certainly seems to have been a key ingredient in the local success that was achieved.

With the belief that the present and future are influenced by the past, perhaps Beeston played a tiny part in today's success. I like to think so.

No comments: