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Sir Chris Hoy, Gold Medal-Winning Olympic Cyclist, Flies RAF Typhoon Jet Over St Andrews (PICTURES)

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Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy swapped his bike for a Royal Air Force Typhoon on Wednesday as he took to the skies above Scotland.

The six-times gold medal-winner boarded the aircraft during a visit to RAF Leuchars in Fife.

The jets, which can fly at twice the speed of sound, were based in west London throughout the Olympic Games to provide security.

sire chris hoy

Maverick cyclist: Sir Chris Hoy

Sir Chris joined 6 Squadron for the 60-minute flight during a routine training exercise which saw him fly as high as 30,000ft (9,144m).

He said: "It was absolutely incredible. It's very difficult to explain just how exciting that was to be up there and what a thrill it was.

"I feel very privileged to be asked to come here and take part in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

"I was in sheer awe of the machinery and how the aircraft operates, and the pilot as well. I'm full of admiration for the skills these guys have."

sir christ hoy

Sir Chris Hoy was a 'natural' according to Wing Cdr Dennis

Sir Chris took over the controls as the Typhoon travelled just off the coast of St Andrews.

"It was fantastic. When the opportunity came for Sir Chris to come to Leuchars and for us to take him flying, we didn't want to miss that," Wing Cdr Dennis said.

"He took control and did a loop and was a bit of a natural. With someone like him, with his skill and natural ability, it was great to get him in the back seat.

"We gave him a quick brief and he picked it up very quickly and he absolutely loved it, it was great fun."

take my breath away

Take my breath away: Sir Chris Hoy kisses his wife Sarra upon returning to ground

The Typhoon is the RAF's multi-role combat aircraft, with crews on stand-by all year round at the Fife base.
Wing Commander Roddy Dennis flew the aircraft with Sir Chris as a passenger up to Orkney and then back down over the Highlands.

Sir Chris kissed his wife Sarra when he greeted her after landing back at the base, as well as meeting RAF personnel on the ground.

Earlier he visited the station's youth project for a question-and-answer session with children who were holding an Olympic-themed sports day.

He also met members of the cycling club who took the opportunity to quiz him on his diet and training methods.

Sir Chris said: "The dream would be to continue on for two more years (to Glasgow 2014). It's whether my body can continue, whether I'm going to be injury-free and fit enough to continue because there's a very strong team.

"Just to get in the Scottish team is going to be a fight but it would be the ideal way to finish off: a home Olympics and then a home Commonwealth Games. It wouldn't be too bad.

hoy

A-Hoy there: the gold medallist shared his diet and training tips with members of the station's youth project

"I've been very busy since the Games, travelling from place to place, and I've been enjoying not having to worry about training and just letting it all sink in.

"The Olympics are still fresh in people's minds and they're really excited to see any Olympic athlete that's been involved in it. To come up here and get this reception... everyone's so welcoming."

Referring to his ride in the jet, he said: "You just don't realise what goes into every single flight and the amount of work that goes on in the background. And I want to thank everyone at RAF Leuchars for everything they've done to get me up in the Typhoon today."

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