Travelling over 400km on our roads, the Giro d’Italia cyclists will be unaware of the role that Northern Ireland has played in the speed and aerodynamics of the modern professional cyclist, according to political cartoonist and historian Ian Knox who has designed a special piece of artwork to commemorate 125 years since the City witnessed a great invention that revolutionised cycling.
The wall art which was commissioned as part of Hatfield House 140th Birthday Celebrations and is supported by Harp lager commemorates local cyclist Willie Hume who on 18 May 1889 won the first race with the world¹s first pneumatic tyre which was invented in Belfast and past the exact same spot where the art hangs.
Speaking at today’s launch Kieran Cassidy owner of the Hatfield House said, “With this fantastic event coming here we wanted to remind people of Northern Ireland’s contribution to cycling through a comic and fun piece of art. We hope that the artwork will not only welcome cyclists but also remind local and international visitors to the City that the first pneumatic tyre was invented in Belfast.”
Austin Guy, Diageo Northern Ireland said, “We are delighted to support the Hatfield Bar in the development of the artwork and to also support the trade to maximise this great event and help provide a unique and authentic experience.
“International events are helping to reposition Northern Ireland as a great place to visit with numerous events planned in 2014 and beyond including the Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race from 21 – 29 June and with confirmation that the Irish Open will return in 2015 and 2017 Diageo NI is committed to supporting the drive to grow our tourism reputation.”
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