Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland launched at Glentress
A "world class national centre of excellence and innovation" for Scottish mountain biking has been launched at Glentress in the Borders.
The £300,000 Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland will help businesses with product development projects, testing and launch events.
The site near Peebles already enjoys a worldwide reputation in the sport.
Earlier this year it helped to host a round of the Enduro World Series which brought 600 elite riders to the area.
In its first two years the centre aims to:
- Help businesses launch five new products or services
- Push forward three development projects
- Support 25 business start-ups.
It is hoped that within five years it will generate an additional £1.5m in turnover.
The centre is the result of a project led by Scottish Enterprise in partnership with main funders the Scottish Funding Council and Edinburgh Napier University.
A recent economic impact study stated that the sport generated around £120m annually for the Scottish economy.
Alistair McKinnon, director for the south of Scotland at Scottish Enterprise, said it was a "fantastic addition" to support for one of the country's "fastest-growing sports".
"Already we have evidence of a developing culture of innovation between businesses and academia and the centre will build on this with significant engagement from Scottish Enterprise's innovation support," he said.
Sports Minister Shona Robison added: "Set in the beautiful scenery of the Borders, Glentress has everything it needs to succeed as a centre of excellence.
"Scotland has an enviable international reputation for mountain biking and the new centre at Glentress is a great addition to the area that will help grow employment, tourism and business."