Howden steps down as chair of British Cycling

British Cycling president Bob Howden and Gary Verity of the Tour de Yorkshire

British Cycling president Bob Howden and Gary Verity of the Tour de Yorkshire (Image credit: Swpix)

British Cycling has announced that Bob Howden has stepped down as chair, but that he will remain in his role as the president of the national federation.

Howden, who was re-elected as president of British Cycling in December of last year, has been replaced as chair by Jonathan Browning, who was first appointed as a non-executive director in March 2015.

"I am honoured to have been elected as the new chair of British Cycling at such an important moment in its history. British Cycling has delivered tremendous success for the sport at every level over the past two decades, but there is clearly work to do to take the organisation to the next level," Browning said in a released statement.

"I look forward to working with the executive leadership team, including our new performance director Stephen Park, to do just that. Recruitment for a new chief executive is going well and we expect to make a further announcement in the next few weeks."

The news comes at a turbulent time for British Cycling. The body is central to a UKAD investigation into allegations of wrongdoing that also involves Team Sky and Bradley Wiggins. UK Sport are also set to publish a separate and delayed report in March looking into the culture at British Cycling after allegations of bullying and sexism led to the resignation of Shane Sutton. Ian Drake left his post as the CEO of British Cycling in January of this year.

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"The appointment of an independent chair brings British Cycling more closely in line with the new Code for Sports Governance and is also an important step in work that has been going on for some time in updating the structures of the organisation to ensure we have the capacity to meet the challenges and opportunities ahead of us," Howden said.

In April of 2016, Howden told Cyclingnews that he would remain in his post at British Cycling regardless of whether the allegations of sexism and bullying stood up. He said: I am an elected board member in charge and president of the federation. If there is sexism there then I have gone on record as saying I seek equality in the sport and am encouraging this with events, with the step up of events in terms of distance and the status of women's cycling. I consider that's a work in progress and if there is sexism I would like to continue to eradicate that, so I don't feel there is anything for me to reproach myself for."

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