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Friday, February 01, 2008
The Evening Standard reports how the 'compact' nature of the Olympics is causing problems, especially as regards trying to find suitable venues for the 'rural' events, like mountain biking and 3 day eventing, close to the capital. Now England is not a huge country, and allowing a few choice events to escape from London and nearby counties wouldn't really dilute the games, would it? Of particular concern is how an 'unchallenging' site and course has been proposed and rejected for the Mountain Biking. Over the last decade the UK's reputation for mountain biking has improved greatly with overseas visitors, admittedly with England falling behind Wales and Scotland, and showing the whole world a flat and boring track at the Olympics could set this back and would do nothing for future tourism prospects. Tourism you say? Yep, I've bumped into a few people who have visited the UK to mountain bike, esp from Europe. Okay, we don't have the alps, but we do have trails that are open all year around and offer a huge variety of experiences. We don't want the message going out that cycling off-road in the UK is about riding around flat easy trails.