16 Sep Cycling development
In 2014 PPA amended its development club cycling strategy to primarily focus on junior cyclists and cyclists in real financial difficulty, assessing such requests for assistance on a case-by-case basis. PPA continues to support primarily junior cyclists with subsidised membership fees, entry fees and timing chips, assisting them in this way to enter the sport. PPA continued to support some 30 development clubs in this way, adding transport assistance and bicycle spares and maintenance through various Project Funding initiatives. Funding towards development initiatives that had been supported for three years and longer, was reduced.
This strategy was continued in 2015 and 2016.
In the next year, PPA will focus to a greater extent on the development of cycling and cycling at grass-roots level, including increased focus on schools cycling and the youth. We will be looking at an integrated approach to cycling which includes sport cycling, cycling development, utility cycling and recreational cycling.
Amongst others, we are excited to bring back the hosting of a PPA league which will serve as a platform for junior cyclists to stand out and be noticed. We have allocated some R200 000 towards a “PPA Academy” which, amongst others, will be used to introduce deserving youngsters coming through the leagues to racing opportunities they would not otherwise have been exposed to, including the opportunity to train and race overseas, as well as an entry to the Cape Rouleur for four youngsters.
We have negotiated excellent discounts with two of the major bicycle distributors, which we will use to subsidise the purchase of racing bikes for these cyclists, with clubs contributing the remainder. The PPA mandate covers entry level bicycles, but we understand the needs of racing cyclists and are happy to support in this way.
The coming year will prove to be an exciting year for cycling development and project funding.
We appeal to all PPA members to continue donating kit, bicycles and spares. In this way, the Association assisted development riders from clubs in previous years.