Sir Chris Hoy will carry the flag for Great Britain at the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony, it has been confirmed.
Over recent days, speculation has been rife that fellow cyclist Bradley Wiggins, hot on his historic victory in the Tour de France, would be given the honour.
But it has now been confirmed that Sir Chris, who already has four Olympic gold medals to his name and who is going for more glory in London, was given the nod by the 542 members of Team GB.
As such, he will carry the Union Flag out onto the track of the brand new Olympics Stadium at Friday’s multi-million-pound opening ceremony, a development that has left him feeling “absolutely delighted and honoured”.
“To lead out your team at a home Olympics is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity and one that that I can’t wait to experience in just a few days time,” he said.
The 36-year-old will lead his team out right at the end of the ceremony, with the rest of the 204 competing nations to enter the arena before the hosts as thousands of spectators in the stadium, as well as thousands booked into central London hotels and hundreds of millions of TV viewers around the world, look on.
Once the formalities are out of the way, the Scot will then get down to business as he gears up to compete in both the team sprint and keirin cycling events at the velodrome.
Should he taste victory in both of these events, he will make history by surpassing Sir Steve Redgrave’s British record of five Olympics gold medals to add to the one silver he won at the Sydney Games back in 2000.
Also this week, Sir Chris tipped Wiggins to follow his lead and get a knighthood from the Queen before too long in recognition of his becoming the first Briton ever to win cycling’s top event.