Track World Cup Glasgow - A new age for Scottish cycling
Commonwealth Games Medalist James Maccallum
In October 2011 I stood in the cold concrete of what to looked just like any other indoor track under construction in the world. The difference with this one? The fact that out the windows by the westend I can see a football ground by the name of Parkhead which is home to Celtic FC. From my point of view this was very surreal. A quick realisation was taking place. This was really happening,and the dream of Scotland having its first indoor velodrome is coming true. Now just a year on Glasgow is gearing up to host a round of the Track World cup and is ready to step up and show just what it can do.
Don't get me wrong I was used to my surroundings, having grown up just 4 miles away in a Glasgow suburb I was used to passing the football stadium pretty much on a daily basis. But to be look at it from this angle and standing in what will become the Sir Chris Hoy velodrome was totally alien.
Over the past 20 years the UK has slowly seen a shift in finance and facility support in cycling. First came the velodromes in Manchester then Newport and most recently London in which GB were so dominant on the boards. We have become the superpower in track and my hope is now that in Scotland we really can use the momentum from London 2012 and stay true to the notion of inspiring a generation.
We've got to a point where there are no real excuses as to why Scotland can't be competitive world wide. We have the facilities,the knowledge and the nation is gripped with cycling fever.
Having spent the best part of 23 years racing competitively in cycling I now realise that yes I may be in my twilight years, but it won't stop me from being a part of the new legacy here in Scotland building to the Glasgow Commonwealth games in 2014.
Now instead of waking up on a winters morning, looking out the window at driving rain and freezing temperature. I no longer have to work out my strategy of survival for my training rides or spend hours watching DVD's on a turbo trainer.
I can just put my track bike In the car,drive 30 minutes and be indoors and away from the cruel Scottish winter.
As I said earlier we no longer have excuses as to why we can't.
Roll on October.
James Maccallum is a professional cyclist for the Rapha Condor Sharp professional cycling team and a former commonwealth games medallist on the track. Follow him on twitter