We adapted to the challenging world by trying new things

We were guided by the question “how can we best support the athletes”?

✨ special projects

  • Hustle, Toronto Hustle. JR’s in Europe
  • Tag-tastic. U23’s in Europe
  • 4 Athlete to Enterprise scholarships
  • Tuft camps – rolling out in ’22

We prioritized work that got athletes racing. We still seek the right women’s race project to support. We started something new with Tuft Camps, stay tuned.

Athletes 🏃🏼‍♀️

39 total athletes were directly supported by BTG in 2021. Through a grant, mentoring, or a special project. We reduced our individual rider grants in 2021, with more emphasis on funding projects.

Racing days 🏁

BTG supported athletes raced over 346 days in 2021. Which was awesome. We wrote about the importance of race days here and here.

Looking at our 3 most & least raced athletes we start to see an important “gap”. Our most raced women had 71 race days, averaging 23-24 race days each. Our most raced men had 84 race days, averaging 28. This is really good considering the pandemic had it’s highest impact on nations like Canada, outside western Europe – where racing was least affected by the global health crisis.

Yikes 😲, our least-raced athletes had almost no racing. It is really beneficial for young promising and aspiring athletes to have opportunities to race and learn in high-quality races to properly develop.

On average, Canadian men race about 40% as much as their global peers and women about 20%. Our women race 3 x less than our men, on average. There is still meaningful work to do…



Mentoring keeps getting better

We think mentoring may be the most important work we do for athletes. 22 athletes benefited from mentoring in 2021. 75% feel the program is “extremely valuable”, that’s up from 53%. We are so fortunate that many of Canada’s most accomplished current and former athletes donate their time to give back. Huge thanks to: Ryan Anderson, Zach Bell, Sara Bergen, Guillaume Boivin, Rob Britton, Karol Ann Canuel, Alex Cataford, Nigel Ellsay, Hugo Houle, Alison Jackson, Linda Jackson, Geoff Kabush, Leah Kirchmann, Ben Perry, Sara Poidevin, Denise Ramsden, Svein Tuft, Erinne Willock, and Mike Woods.

 Karol-Ann is leading this intiative now. More on that below…

Investing in youth & future ✔️

We believe healthy sport needs investment in the future. We do this by seed funding Youth clubs, events, or programs that get Canadian kids having fun and racing bikes. In 2021 we supported 2 youth clubs and 1 youth race. We wrote about some of the success we’re seeing here. Youth races struggled to be run during the pandemic. 🤞 2022 is better and massive thanks to those who got kids racing last year, there are so many great youth initiatives across the country now.

3 🤟
Youth cycling initiatives

Sharing Stories

📣 people joined our #conversations

We started 4 new online initiatives to tell stories, inform, educate and inspire constructive conversations about the sport.

#conversations and webinars with Canada’s top pro cyclists, over 250 people joined live, replayed over 1,000 x on Youtube. Rob started our Instagram, we created the “charting journeys” series & posted 12 stories on our website.

Bonus: Back on the Bus #pdcst. Opinions their own, Randy and Svein started something pretty cool too.

2 incredibles
will lead us into the magic future!

Leah evolved our mentoring program and now leads the fund. Karol Ann retired from an amazing career and takes over mentoring. Read more here

Fund Distribution

Since 2013, we’ve expanded our work and brought in new supporters. Here’s what the distribution of BTG support looks like today:

Fund distribution

The landscape is changing…

The Women’s World Tour is moving quickly, #conversation here. Tracking Canadian journeys to cycling’s top-tiers is important. We look at this very simply:


BTG Pathway

BTG works in the highlighted areas. If we think about how things are going for Canadian Cycling, it might look like this:

Things are “red” if: we don’t know or need better measurement; there may be alignment issues; important numbers to track are down; etc.

For example: the number of Canadian men racing in UCI Conti trade teams is down 51% → the number of men in ProConti/World Tour teams is down by 2 (about -13%). Rob, Matteo, and Ben all moved out or moved on from Cycling’s top tiers, while Raph moved in 👍. Canadian Women: Mags, Sara, Olivia and Gabby all moved into great new teams, joining Leah and AJ at the top of the sport. Karol Ann moved on – and is helping us 👏. There’s some great news about Premier Tech’s new U23 project 🥳   However, that only dents the overall decline. Investment in Canadian women at a similar development level has lagged behind men for years. Racing in Canada and across North America is struggling during the pandemic, it will come back, and there are some truly exciting shifts to track.

While fragile or even weak, we see opportunity 🔍

We will continue to explore meaningful new ways to help Canadian cycling and support athletes. In 2022 BTG will continue a focus on “special projects” to address the “race days gap”.

🥂 Cheers 2021, let’s get going 2022


Global Relay Bridge The Gap Fund
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