Welcome to VeloUK! – A new chapter in road racingâ€™s history | By Larry Hickmott
The first thing I must do is thank everyone who has made this possible. From Mary Gill and Jonathan Beckett who helped me through the early stages of learning how to create a Word Press website, to Mick and Andy at Prendas who were with me when I had my first website EchelonVelo, to all those who have encouraged me to do this and the well wishers on Twitter and Facebook (far to numerous to mention all by name!).
Since the late â€˜90s, I have been covering the sport of cycle racing in Britain. It all started by accident with me wanting to learn HTML programming for the software company Digita who I worked for at the time. That was EchelonVelo. Those who have been round long enough, remind me that there was a printed version as well!
I was then headhunted, always a nice thing for the CV that, by Peter Cossins who worked for Rivals.net and EchelonVelo went commercial along with another website inspired by Peter, the Daily Peloton. There I worked hard and was rewarded by meeting lots of people and built up a large and loyal following, many of whom I am lucky enough to still know today.
Rivals though, for whatever reason, decided to get rid of a lot of niche sports and that included cycling. Before I could really worry about what was going to happen to EchelonVelo though, I was headhunted again, this time, by Stuart Hallam, then member of the board of British Cycling. A meeting took place at Luton airport, all very grand I thought at the time, and I was soon working for British Cycling part time.
At the time of joining, the following appeared in the UK Sport Magazine (May 2002) which shows the value that British Cycling placed on my arrival at that time. â€œAnother site well worth a visit is the excellent www.britishcycling.org.uk, recently relaunched by British Cycling, which contains a wealth of the up-to-date news from the sport, including a comprehensive results service, photo galleries and interviews.
Larry Hickmott, formerly of the Rivals.net cycling website, has been contracted to supply and present race reports, news and features. He will be working alongside Phil Ingham of British Cycling, who said: â€œWe are really excited to have secured Larryâ€™s services. He is an established name within cycling and brings with him an excellent reputation for impartial and accurate reporting. Between us, we intend to make the site an essential part of every online cyclistâ€™s â€˜favouritesâ€™ list.â€
So, for the last 10 years, Iâ€™ve been doing that for the governing body of the sport, British Cycling. However, that organisation is changing and in order to get back to the grass roots and closer to the sport I have the same passion for now that I did when I was 14, I resigned. So many of you had been in touch to say how much they missed the old EchelonVelo and thus, VeloUK was born.
A shorter, snappier name which is quick to type out was given to the site and after my last job for British Cycling, the Para-Cycling Worlds in Italy (could not have wanted for a better send off!), I got to work on the website that now sits before you.
So welcome to my world!
Help VeloUK serve the sport of cycling
Serving the sport though canâ€™t be done on bread and water so I am asking for your help to give the website a future!Â Running the website full time, I need to ensure that it draws an income so whether itâ€™s a donation however small to help keep it going (there is a button on the right!), or if you run a business, then advertising (firstname.lastname@example.org) will help me serve the sport that is part of my fabric after almost 40 years.
From this week onwards, I will be out and about at races, taking photos, doing reports and other features as well as providing the latest results. You can also help by emailing VeloUK and sharing your photos and words with the rest of this great community in Britain.