Shimla will have a center of excellence for cycling: The Tribune India

Tribune press service

Shimla, March 24

The Ministry of Youth and Sports in collaboration with the Department of Youth Services and Sports of Himachal Pradesh is set to construct a National Center of Excellence (NCOE) in Shimla to train athletes in mountain biking and at bike motocross. The collaboration between the Center and the State to establish this world-class facility was formalized with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding here today.

World-class infrastructure

  • The center will have world-class infrastructure, a state-of-the-art sports science high performance center, an Olympic-level track and world-class coaches.
  • India’s top cyclists and local sports talents can train at the centre. Due to the hilly terrain the sport requires, Shimla emerged as the preferred choice for the center.

The idea to build the state-of-the-art Shimla facility was floated by the Himalayan Adventure Sports and Tourism Promotion Association. The associate has been organizing cycling championships in the city for several years now.

“We have the natural advantage of having the right terrain and climate to promote cycling. Once this facility is in place, we can expect to do very well at international events, including the Olympics,” said association president Mohit Sood. The NCOE will come to Summerhill.

Located at an altitude of more than 2000m above sea level, the center will have world-class infrastructure, a state-of-the-art sports science high performance center, a track of Olympic level and internationally renowned trainers, where the best cyclists and local sporting talents can train.

Due to the hilly terrain the sport requires and a conducive training climate, Shimla has become the NCOE’s preferred choice. “The plan also includes a residential facility for around 100 cyclists from across the country, where they will stay for six months a year and train,” Sood said.

With the establishment of this SAI Center of Excellence, officials believe that Shimla can become a venue for future world championships for two cycling disciplines. The center will have a training track with specialized features, a BMX track, a state-of-the-art indoor gymnasium, an indoor facility with virtual trainers, hostel facilities for 100 athletes, coaches and support staff.

In addition, there will be a high performance sports science center with state-of-the-art facilities such as an indoor recovery pool, stream and sauna, weight and conditioning room, biomechanical lab, physiotherapy , etc

The cycling craze in Shimla has increased in recent years, especially during the pandemic. “A few years ago, hardly anyone was interested in cycling. There are now around 2,000 cyclists in the city, of which around 40 to 50 ride the sport at a competitive level,” Sood said.

About Frances R. Smith

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