2023 UCI CYCLING WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS’ 23 MILLION MILE CHALLENGE HITS TARGET AHEAD OF SCHEDULE
More than 51k riders across the world have proven the power of the bike by riding 23 million miles as part of a UCI Cycling World Champs initiative.
More than 51,000 riders across the UK and around the world have proven the power of the bike by riding an epic 23 million miles as part of the initiative launched by the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships and Love to Ride, to get more people riding their bikes.
While all eyes have been on Scotland for the past nine days of scintillating action, cyclists everywhere have been logging miles as part of the 23 Million Mile Challenge since it was launched on 25 April to coincide with 100 days to go until the UCI Cycling World Championships. Through their combined efforts, this ambitious target was reached yesterday (Thursday, Aug. 10), three days ahead of schedule as the Challenge was set to run until the end of the event on Sunday 13 August.
Among those who logged their miles was Janet Kerr from Fife, a Love to Ride Super User, who has used riding her bike to help her with her medical condition while raising funds for charity.
She said: “I’m always motivated to ride my bike, as it’s the best medicine for my progressive neurological condition but knowing that my efforts are helping to reach a collective goal makes me feel part of a team.
“The Challenge couldn’t have come at a more opportune time as I've just cycled from Plymouth to Barcelona to attend a conference as part of a fundraising and raising awareness mission. Talk about killing two birds with one stone and adding 830 miles to the pot was a Brucey Bonus.
“I am unable to walk longer distances, therefore my bike, in a way, is my mobility vehicle and if I am walking beside it, it becomes an expensive zimmer, so for me, the ‘power of the bike,’ has literally been a life saver.”
Christian Lampe, Love to Rides very own Product Lead, also took part in the challenge. He explains why he’s been inspired to take part and what riding his bike means to him.
He said: “I'm personally inspired by the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships taking place in Glasgow and across Scotland. It’s been a big celebration of cycling in all its forms and having the 23 Million Mile Challenge as part of the celebration is a great way to inspire people to dust off their bikes and go for a ride. Having a target is always motivating and if it's shared amongst a community then even better.
“Riding my bike means everything to me. It is the ultimate sense of freedom. You can go so far under your own power. There is no dependence on getting fuel, except for sandwiches and pastries, and you can explore much further beyond where a car has to give up and turn around.”
If you’re inspired by the Championships and are looking to challenge yourself to get back on your bike for the first time in a while, both Janet and Christian have some great advice to help you get started.
Janet said: “I didn’t wake up one day and think, ‘I’m going to cycle to Barcelona!’ I started by cycling a few miles, then slowly and gradually building up the distance. It is also a good way to introduce your body to a new exercise regime and time for your bottom to get used to the saddle.”
Christian said: “Start small. Set goals along the way and don't compare yourself to others. It can be inspiring to follow successful riders on social media but remember it will have taken them thousands of hours to get where they are today. If you can ride 10 miles, then set a goal to ride 15 miles. Celebrate when you reach each goal. If you keep doing this for a year it will be hard to believe what you can accomplish.”
Trudy Lindblade, 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships Chief Executive, said: “The 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships is an event for everyone, and partnering with Love to Ride has been a great initiative to showcase that. Riders of all fitness levels have put in the effort to log their miles and help us achieve this incredible target, and we are grateful for everyone who signed up for the Challenge and harnessed the power of the bike.”
While hitting the target for the 23 Million Mile Challenge is an incredible achievement by all involved, there is still time for individuals to log their miles as the 23 Million Mile Challenge will remain open until Sunday, 13 August when the Women Elite Road Race will go from Loch Lomond to Glasgow’s George Square, bringing the curtain down on an historic first-of-its-kind event.