By Gary Anderson

November 13 - British Cycling has launched a new four-year strategy called British Cycling: Our CommitmentBritish Cycling launched its new four-year strategy today, vowing to maintain or even increase Britain's success at recent Olympic and Paralympic Games at Rio 2016 and has also targeted a raise of 100,000 in once-a-week participation by 2017.

The launch of the new strategy, British Cycling: Our Commitment,follows the election Bob Howden as its new President following the departure of Brian Cookson to take up the same role with the International Cycling Federation (UCI) in September.

British Cycling claimed that the new strategy sets out its future vision and direction for the next four years to build on the strong foundations already in place and one of its key commitments is to continue the success of Britain on the elite international stage.

Since Sydney 2000, cycling has contributed 19 Olympic gold medals to Team GB's tally, with 16 of those coming at Beijing 2008 and London 2012, while 28 gold medals have been won in the same period by Paralympic cyclists.

Since National Lottery funding began in 1997, 35 World Championship titles have been won in Olympic disciplines while the summit of road cycling has been reached twice in the last two years with Tour De France victories for Team Sky's Sir Bradley Wiggins in 2012 followed this year by Chris Froome.

British Cycling says it wants to continue Britain's unprecedented success at recent Olympic Games led by the likes of Sir Chris HoyBritish Cycling says it wants to continue Britain's unprecedented success at recent Olympic Games led by the likes of Sir Chris Hoy @Getty Images

"Over the next four years we need to remain true to what has become our tradition: to succeed on the world stage and to inspire people to enjoy riding their bikes more often, be it for sport, recreation or transport," said Howden.

"Brian Cookson is a tough act to follow - especially when you look at the amazing roll call of successes that British Cycling has enjoyed under his leadership.

"We are certainly riding high and it's now my job to ensure that we build on this over the next four year cycle.

"I'm looking forward to getting stuck in."

Last month, British Cycling's annual report claimed membership was at an all-time high with more than 80,000 members, an increase of 40 per cent year on year, and continued growth in membership along with an increased volunteer workforce is one of the commitments made in today's strategy launch.

The organisation has also targeted an increase of 100,000 in once-a-week participation by 2017 which it says can only be achieved through its continued partnership with Sky and a significant expansion of its delivery model with local authorities and other stakeholders.

The governing body has also pledged to get one million more women riding bikes by 2020 through the continuation of its Breeze programme launched in 2010, which tackles barriers faced by women and young girls getting into the sport.

It says it will also provide "female-specific" Go-Ride development sessions and Go-Ride Racing events.

British Cycling says it wants to increase female cycling participation by one million by 2020British Cycling says it wants to increase female cycling participation by one million by 2020 @Getty Images

"British Cycling is now well-established as the leading sports governing body in this country, thanks to an astonishing range of successes across the Olympic and Paralympic Games, World Championships and the creation and successes of Team Sky," said Ian Drake, British Cycling's chief executive.

"But it is not just there that we have delivered.

"Our participation programmes have continued to thrive.

"Our partnership with Sky is transforming participation in cycling across Britain with over one million new regular participants recruited since we launched the Sky Ride programme in 2009.

"Looking to the future, our challenge is to continue to thrive in this new era and expand in a sustainable manner, making the most of the opportunities offered to us.

"More people than ever before, in every walk of life, now know more about cycling and want to get involved.

"We are determined to welcome them, encourage them and work with them to move our sport forward."

To view the full British cycling strategy click here.

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