By Nick Butler

Sir Chris Hoy one year to goJuly 23 - Glasgow 2014 ambassador Sir Chris Hoy today began a series of sporting, photographic and cultural activities to celebrate the one year to go milestone to the Opening Ceremony of next year's Commonwealth Games

Sir Chris, the six-time Olympic and twice Commonwealth Games gold medallist, hosted a people's bike challenge and a Breakfast of Champions in the center of the Scottish city for lucky sports fans.

He was joined by Scottish athletes and Glasgow 2014 mascot Clyde, as well as dancers, musicians and street performers to illustrate the vibrancy that the city will feel during the Games.

A series of nine portraits has also been commissioned, each capturing an aspect of Scottish culture encompassing its natural beauty, historic landmarks, sporting fields of play or its connections with the Games themselves.

Some of these most famous landmarks have been temporarily decorated with a 16ft inflatable number one marker to further celebrate the countdown.

Scottish landmark one year before Commonwealth Games 2The Royal and Ancient Golf Club at St Andrews is one of Scotland's most iconic landmarks 

"It's a real thrill to be in the heart of Glasgow today celebrating the 'One Year to Go' milestone to the Commonwealth Games," Sir Chris said.

"Glasgow 2014 is the biggest sporting celebration coming to the UK next year, the biggest sporting occasion ever seen in Scotland and the next opportunity to see a wealth of top athletes and the next generation of superstars in action.

"The Commonwealth Games has a very special place in my heart.

"It's an occasion like no other in sport and I have no doubt that Glasgow and Scotland will ensure next year's Games are an unforgettable and enjoyable experience for athletes and spectators alike.

"I'd encourage everyone to be part of this.

"Roll on next year and bring on Glasgow 2014."

The 11-day sporting festival will see 4,500 athletes compete for 261 sets of medals in 17 sports across 14 venues.

350,000 copies of the ticketing guide have been released across Scotland and online, listing details of ticket sales, with prices beginning at £15 ($23/€17) for all sports, and half-price tickets for under 16s and over 60s.

There are no booking fees for any tickets while, in a repeat of London 2012, tickets also include free public transport in the local area on the day of the sport session.

Strathclyde Country ParkStrathclyde Country Park will host the first medal event, women's triathlon, of Glasgow 2014

The first gold medal will be won in the women's triathlon at Strathclyde Country Park on July 24, while the athletics' showpiece, the men's and women's 100m finals, will each take place four days later at Hampden Stadium.

The programme also features swimming, cycling, gymnastics and much more, while women's boxing and triathlon mixed team relay will each make their Commonwealth Games debut.

Scottish Olympic gymnast Daniel Keatings said he was "honoured and proud" to be the front-page star of the ticketing guide.

"Glasgow 2014 is going to be one of the biggest competitions in my career and the thought of standing on the podium next year in front of a home crowd means everything," he added.

"Growing up and training as an athlete, you always want to test yourself against the best athletes on the biggest stages.

"A major championship in your home country makes it that extra bit special."

Glasgow 2014 chairman Lord Smith also voiced his excitement: "With one year to go, the Organising Committee is making great strides towards our ultimate goal of delivering an outstanding Games.

"All permanent sports venues are open and in use, we are interviewing up to 1,000 prospective volunteers each week and from today our Ticketing Guide throws open the opportunity for people to start planning their live Games experience.

"Glasgow 2014 is becoming an exciting and fast-approaching reality and everyone is welcome to be part of it."

stirling castleStirling Castle is another famous Scottish landmark celebrating the one-year countdown

The next year will see a host of further celebrations including the Queen's Baton Relay, which will leave Buckingham Palace on October 9 to begin a journey taking in 71 Commonwealth nations and territories before returning to the UK.

As well as Sir Chris and Keatings, other high profile names have been enlisted as Games ambassadors, including Glaswegian comedian Billy Connolly and Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington.

Michael Cavanagh, chairman of Commonwealth Games Scotland, said: "In exactly one year's time Team Scotland's athletes will be ready to go up against the best in the Commonwealth and make their mark at the biggest international sporting event to come to these shores.

"We urge the public to buy tickets when they go on sale next month and make sure that the venues are filled with cheering Scots, helping to make home advantage count."

In a similar vein, Shona Robison, the Minister for Commonwealth Games and Sport, added: "The chance to be involved in one of the world's biggest sporting events becomes a reality today with the launch of the Official Ticketing Guide.

"People can now start to plan their visit and look at all of the events Scotland will be hosting.

"With one year to go until we welcome world-class athletes and supporters from around the globe, we are ready to showcase the best Scotland has to offer as the international spotlight on our country intensifies.

"Seeing the ticketing guide makes all the hard work a reality and adds to the excitement of hosting what I know will be a spectacular event."

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