Top cyclist inspires the next generation ahead of Motherwell race

Cyclist Rhona Callander with pupils from Ladywell Primary
Cyclist Rhona Callander with pupils from Ladywell Primary

Scottish cyclist Rhona Callander visited Motherwell to meet local school children ahead of competing in the OVO Energy Tour Series event today (Tuesday).

Rhona is racing for last year’s Tour Series winners Team Breeze in Round 2 of the event, when it returns to the town for the fifth year in a row.

Rhona began her career at Stirling Bike Club, trying all cycling disciplines before settling on road and track. She took gold at the 2016 Scottish Time Trial Championships and in 2017 became Scotland’s first ever Commonwealth Youth Games champion in cycling with gold in the road race.

On the back of these and other impressive results, Rhona is now part of the British Cycling’s Senior Academy programme and is aiming to compete at the 2022 Commonwealth Games and 2024 Olympic Games.

Rhona spoke to pupils at Ladywell Primary School about what inspired her to take up cycling, the motivation needed to success at the highest level and her career highlights.

She said: “It is not often that we get opportunities to compete on home roads so it is very memorable when they happen.

“I loved the opportunity of visiting Ladywell Primary which is based close to the course to talk to the pupils and staff about my journey as a cyclist and answer their questions – it was great to see them so excited about the OVO Energy Tour Series coming to Motherwell!

“Thanks to North Lanarkshire Council and Scottish Cycling for making this happen!”

The council’s chief executive Des Murray added: “Thank you to Rhona Callander for taking time out of her training schedule to visit Motherwell and meet local school pupils.

“For the council, one of our aims in hosting the event is encourage more children to get on their bikes, to consider cycling as a sport or simply to ride to school or for fun with their friends.

“Rhona gave the pupils a unique insight into the sport she loves and her talk certainly inspired a lot of questions from the pupils!”

Teams of top professional cyclists compete around the 1.2km route starting and finishing on Hamilton Road from 5.30pm.