Cycling as a means of transport had been in use since the past many centuries, after the early man discovered the wheel. Cycling as a sport had originated in the early 1800’s, but it really gained popularity in 1839 when Kirkpatrick Macmillan, a Scottish blacksmith discovered the process of pedal and crank to give power to the machines. Later on after 50 years, cycles were revamped with the discovery of chains and gears. The first recorded cycling competition was organised in Paris in the year 1868. Cycling as a part of Olympic Games has its origin in the first games of modern times which was held in Athens in 1896. Nowadays, however, the game of cycling has undergone a huge change with much advancement made in cycle manufacturing.
The famous cycling events include MTB, AWD, BMX, road and track. MTB which stands for mountain biking includes cross country and down hill competitions. AWD symbolising Athletes with Disabilities has Paralympic Games, IPC Cycling World Championships and Australian AWD Rod Championship events. The track riders, divided into endurance and sprint groups aim to excel at the UCI World Track Championships, UCI track World Cups, Olympic Games and Commonwealth Games. The road cyclists are divided into elite men road and elite women road groups and Australia has a rich heritage of excelling at the road events on an international level.
In particular, the French and European cyclists are very popular and brilliant performers on the cycling track. Australia and America has also produced many famous cyclists like Laurent Jalabert, Francesco Casagrande, Erik Zabel, Miguel Alzamora Riera and Jeannie Longo-Ciprelli. Sydney has produced some of the well-known cycling talents of Australia. The famous Australian cyclists include Anna Wilson, Luke Roberts, Alayna Burns, Michelle Ferris, Stuart O’Grady, Tracey Gaudry, Shane Kelly and Linedlle Higginson on the track. Cadel Evans is also a famous Australian cyclist who is well-known for mountain-biking. For the last three years, Evans has been one of the top-ranked cyclist and sportsman. Evans has twice won the Tour of Tasmania and is a strong contender for Tour De France competition.
Cycling Australia is the main governing body of cycling in the Australian country which is affiliated with the International Cycling Union. Each cycling club of Australian country is a member of this association.
Australia aims to maintain its position at the international cycling competitions and as a result there are many cycling organisations which are existent in the country. Some of the famous Australian cycling clubs include:
- Canberra Cycling Club
- Albury / Wodonga MTB Club
- Armidale Cycling Club
- Northern Sydney Cycle Club
- Orana Veterans Cycling Club
- Over 55 Cycling Club
- Sydney Cycling Club
- Hawthorn Cycling Club
- Knox Bicycle Touring Club
- Melbourne Bicycle Touring Club
- Sunshine Coast Bicycle Touring Club Inc.
- Townsville Cycling Club
- Queensland University Cycling Club
- Adelaide MTB Club
- Albany Cycling Club & MTB Club
- Hills BMX
- Northern Districts Cycling Club