Sydney Harbour Bridge cycleway A cyclist riding north to south along the cycleway, pictured in 2015.

INTRODUCTION

Sport is a large part of Australia’s culture and national identity, and many people think we’re obsessed! You will see sport everywhere, from the back page of every newspaper, to being played in parks every weekend and if you stay long enough, you will even encounter it in the citizenship test! This guide is here to help introduce you to the essentials of Australian sport, starting with explanations of the most popular local sports and finishing with Australia’s biggest yearly sporting events.

Cycling in Sydney

New South Wales, Australia takes place for recreation, commuting and as a sport. Sydney has a hilly topography and so may require a slightly higher level of fitness from cyclists than flatter cities such as Melbourne and Canberra. Sydney depends heavily on motor vehicles where traffic and public transport operate at capacity. This means that cyclist are often competing with motorists for limited space on busier roads, and for limited government resources for expenditure on road infrastructure.[1] In its favour, Sydney has a generally mild climate and there are active cycling groups.

In 2015 the NSW Government enacted legislation[2] that increased fines for many offences that are considered by some[who?] as trivial or even legal in most other countries, such as riding without a helmet.

Cycling in Australia has, until recently, been a minority interest sport, and hostility on the road is also common. One Danish cyclist, Thomas Andersen, who had cycled around the world for four years, singled out Sydney in 2014 as being the worst city he had visited for cyclists.[3]

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