Inspirational world champion and world hour record holder cyclist Graeme Obree visited his former school Newmilns Primary recently to encourage pupils to get on their bikes.
The Flying Scotsman is lending his support to a portfolio of projects led by East Ayrshire Council’s Creative Minds Team in the run up to the Tour of Ayrshire, which is part of the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships, one of the most prestigious cycle races in the world.
Graeme has an incredibly creative mind. He is an innovator, designer, author, inspirational speaker, professional athlete and cycling icon around the world.
He spoke to the young people about his love of cycling, being outdoors in the beautiful East Ayrshire countryside and how he became the best in the world in his sport. The pupils, from P1 right through to P7, were enthralled, listening intently as he told them never to listen to ‘you can’t’, to believe in yourself and to be the best you can be.
Graeme also made a surprise presentation of a silver trophy to the school which had been presented to him in 1993 when he was named Sports Personality of the Year. The school hope to hold an annual prize for pupils in recognition of Graeme’s contribution to the world of cycling and his association with Newmilns Primary School.
Graeme Obree said: “It was a great delight to speak with the school pupils and talk about the fun you can enjoy when on a bike. It’s like being on a magic carpet travelling around and discovering new things and places. East Ayrshire is a great place to cycle with lots of rural roads and paths, which allow you to explore and enjoy the beautiful countryside.
“I hope that the Sports Personality Trophy will help to remind the pupils their dreams can be not only beautiful, but achievable.
With Graeme’s inspirational words ringing in their ears, the children have been invited to undertake a creative writing poetry challenge, celebrating the Tour of Ayrshire and their own adventures and achievements on their bikes.