SIR Chris Hoy’s mother thinks it is “mad” he earns his living by riding a bike but said she is very proud of him all the same.
Sir Chris, 36, a four-time Olympic champion who won three golds at the 2008 Beijing Games, perhaps will not thank his mother for telling everyone that his first bicycle was a girl’s bike.
His Olympic titles are “very, very proud moments” but Carol Hoy added: “Then I was proud of him when he won the egg-and-spoon race when he was a wee boy as well. So I’m just a boring mum who loves her kids.”
Mrs Hoy’s view of her son’s successes are part of eight short films by P&G telling the story of raising a world-class athlete.
Mrs Hoy recalled: “I think it does seem mad to earn your living from riding a bike, but it’s what makes him happy.
“In Beijing, watching Chris standing up on the podium was absolutely unbelievable.
“I don’t know if I cried the whole way through or laughed or smiled but I woke up the next morning and said to my husband David, ‘I dreamt that Chris won three gold medals’ and he said ‘I know, so did I.’.
“His first ever bike was a girl’s bike, handed over by a neighbour. I don’t think he realised it was a girl’s bike at the time. He managed to break that very quickly, which perhaps meant he’d like a new one.”
Edinburgh-born Sir Chris got his first BMX bike when he was about eight or nine.
“I thought he was going to cry with happiness when we took him to the shop, he was so excited, thrilled,” Mrs Hoy recalled.
When he was a child her main role was as chief cook and she is the proud creator of a dish dubbed the “BMX go-faster burger”, which became a favourite of lots of local children.
Educated at George Watson’s College, Chris Hoy later graduated with a BSc Honours in Applied Sports Science from Edinburgh University.
As well as his sporting achievements, he was awarded two Honorary Doctorates from the Edinburgh University and another from Heriot-Watt University. He was also awarded an MBE in the New Year Honours List.
Mrs Hoy added: “When he said he wanted to continue with cycling when he was at university I said ‘Fine, but university is the priority. Once you’ve done that, it’s up to you.’
“Secretly I was thinking ‘Hmm, you’ve got a really good degree and you want to ride a bike . . .’.
“Did I say that to Chris? No. I think in my heart I thought ‘he’ll get fed up with that in a couple of months’.
“I’m really glad I didn’t say it to him. I’m incredibly proud of what he has done.”
Last week, the News told how the Hoy family had spoken of their frustration at failing to secure enough Olympic tickets to watch the cyclist compete live in London.