Olympic champion cyclist Katie visits Motherwell

Primary pupils see gold medals

Ladywell Primary, Motherwell

Olympic champion Katie Archibald MBE visited Motherwell and showed local school children the gold medal she won last weekend at the UCI World Track Cycling World Championships 2017 in Hong Kong.

Katie was visiting the town ahead of Matrix Fitness Women's Grand Prix and The Tour Series cycling races which take place on 23 May.

She spoke to 200 pupils from Ladywell, Logans and St Bernadette's Primary Schools about her career in the sport and took time to answer their questions.

"As a child, I liked swimming but then I got interested in cycling and entered my first race at 16 which is quite late to take up a sport competitively," Katie explained. "Up until then it was just fun but I won my first race and got the taste for winning.

"I started training with Scottish Cycling, two years before the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 where I won a bronze medal. That's the medal I'm most proud of; as it was a home event for me, all my friends and family were there to watch. It shows that if you really want to do something, it's never too late."

Katie went on to win gold in the team pursuit at the Rio Olympics in 2016, also setting a new world record.

Days before her visit to Motherwell, Katie won gold in the women's omnium event at the World Championships, the first time she has won a world title as an individual and the first Scottish woman to win an individual world championship.

"What I have learnt most from cycling is perseverance," Katie told the school pupils. "You don't win every day and I've lost more races than I've won. You don't wake up and be the best at a sport, but you can wake up and enjoy it. If you enjoy what you do, it's far easier to motivate yourself and keep trying when things don't go as well.

"I'm looking forward to coming back to Motherwell to race on 23 May and I hope you'll come along to see the racing up close, and give me and my team a cheer."

Katie will compete with Team WNT Pro Cycling in the Matrix Fitness Grand Prix, a race she won when the event came to Motherwell for the first time in 2015. A total of 13 teams will take part, with up to five riders in each team, racing around the 1.2km town centre circuit, starting at 5.30pm. The men's Tour Series event starts at 7.30pm with podium presentations at 9pm. The whole event is free for spectators.

The council is hosting The Tour Series and Matrix Fitness Grand Prix for the third year in a row. Before these races, local school children will have the opportunity to cycle around the 1.2km circuit then Scottish Cycling will hold a number of amateur races.

The Tour Series and Matrix Fitness Grand Prix in Motherwell are sponsored by Robertson Homes, NL Leisure, Amey, Mears and Clyde 1, and is supported by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland's Events Directorate.

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