Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games was undoubtably a highlight of the summer sporting calendar capturing the imagination of a city in Glasgow and indeed across the entire Commonwealth. Amongst all of the incredible sporting talent and stories on show their was a rather unique story taking place in the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome. Jedidiah Amoako-Ackah (Jeddie) became the first Ghanaian track cyclist to compete in track cycling at any recognised competitive event, let alone the Commonwealth Games.
After a chance meeting at the accreditation classes to be allowed to ride the velodrome, Jeddie approached Glasgow based designer Matt Burns to design and develop a unique skin suit for the games. On the design of the suit Matt said “The stripes on the sides of the suit are unbroken. They begin at the cuff on the arm, extend and wrap around to the shoulder blade, under the armpits to the side and continuing to a finish at the thigh. The front of the suit features a single black star on the right side of the chest. Ghana is often referred to as “the black star of Africa”. It was important that the star was an underlining theme in the overall design. Across the thigh of the skin suit is an impression of a Ghanaian Kente Cloth pattern. It has been designed using a simple pattern created by stars and colour. The back of the suit features custom typography for the team name, ‘Ghana’. The stencil style type has been created by incorporating angled edges to reflect the character of a star.”
Day One of Glasgow 2014 saw Jeddie compete in the Men’s Individual sprint, and a few days later in the Men’s Keirin. The design of the skin suit needed to reflect the brief provided from Jeddie – a sleek, minimalist design that gave him a strong presence on the bike, whilst reflecting Ghana’s heritage.
The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games was the first stage of Jeddie’s dream for track cycling in Ghana. The next stop is Rio, where Jeddie wishes to take with him a full Ghanaian track cycling team. He also has the vision to build a velodrome in Ghana to further development of the sport. If you want to keep up with Jed’s story follow him on Twitter @IAmJeddie