John Barclay Obituary, Death – During his lifetime, John played a significant part in the growth of a number of the most well-known and decorated professional cyclists in Britain. He planned race trips to Belgium, Holland, and France in order to provide promising young riders with the opportunity to compete against the top riders on the continent. This experience proved to be important to the young cyclists.
Hundreds of young riders got their very first chance to compete in races outside of the country as a result of John’s pioneering race travels. The excursions were self-funded to a significant extent, and John took on the position of organizer voluntarily, devoting many hours of his time every year to getting ready for the weekend’s races.
Sir Bradley Wiggins, Mark Cavendish, David Millar, Geraint Thomas, Ian Stannard, and Adam Blythe, to name just a few, are among the athletes that got their start in the sport under John’s tutelage when they were younger. Many of the sport’s highest distinctions, including admission into the British Cycling Hall of Frame, the Bidlake Award, and the Pedal Club’s Golden Book, were bestowed upon John in appreciation of his significant contributions to the industry. In addition to that, the British Empire Medal was bestowed upon him in the New Year’s Honours List of 2020 for his services to the sport of cycling.
Geraint Thomas, who won the Tour de France in 2018, had this to say about the influence of John: “John was an important figure in my early career as a race car driver. When we were juniors, he would frequently bring a bunch of us to Belgium on the weekends. It enlightened me about the genuine nature of the competition. Not only with regard to the ferocity of the races but also with regard to the strategies and the general atmosphere of them. In those days, it was impossible to compare the racing in other countries to that which took place in the UK.
“He did it all on his own dime, with very few people expressing gratitude. It was done entirely out of enthusiasm for the sport as well as to be of assistance to us. Those junior competitions truly helped me improve as a bike rider, and they laid the groundwork for the rest of my professional career. He is deserving of each and every accolade that is bestowed upon him.