Last Updated on June 8, 2015 by Simon Elson
A new purpose built sporting venue is opening in six months, not fifteen miles away from where I am right now. If it had been built five years ago I would have been vaguely interested, but as I am now a cycle mad (or should that be a mad cyclist) Mamil, I am really excited about it……….
What is it? A Velodrome and its opening in Derby….. it gets even more interesting though.
The current ‘hour’ record (most miles traveled in an hour) was split into two records in 2000.
The traditional ‘U.C.I’ (Union Cycliste Internationale) record stayed but a new ‘Best human effort’ (B.H.E) was added. All ‘U.C.I’ records set after Eddy Mercx’s 1972 49.431 km distance were downgraded to B.H.E due to modern innovations being banned retrospectively and the bike type allowed, returned to a standard frame/drop bar bike. Eddy’s record was reinstated. It has been broken by small increments by several people since, including Chris Boardman in 2000 (after his 1996 effort was downgraded to B.H.E)
The ‘U.C.I’ record is currently held by Ondřej Sosenka at 49.700 Km (but its validity is questioned due to positive dope tests in 2001 and 2008) and the ‘B.H.E’ record stands at 91.56 km, nearly double and is held by Francesco Russo, no not the guy out of Status Quo that’s Francis Rossi……..
However the U.C.I. have now decided that current technology should be embraced and modern endurance track bikes will now be allowed to go for the more prestigious U.C.I Record rather than the B.H.E …. The record will almost certainly fall in the next 12 months (probably many times).
Why does Derby’s Velodrome get more interesting? Sir Bradley Wiggins stated in May this year that Derby will be his venue of choice for any attempts he makes at the record…. shunning Manchester.
On hearing Bradley Wiggins statement, Derby Councillor Martin Repton said “We’re absolutely delighted at this incredibly positive endorsement.”
Velodromes normally run taster sessions for the public and I will be one of the first in the queue if they do as I really fancy a go on a ‘Fixie’ (quote from my mum.. ‘what do you mean you can’t stop pedalling and no brakes! is it safe?’) around a track and my in-laws live in Derby so I can either leave Mrs E and Little-un with her parents when it opens and go for a blast round the banking in peace and quiet, or whip up a small entourage to watch…..
Either way I don’t think Sir Bradley needs to worry about any serious competition from me…..
Stop Press 08/06/15
Obviously Bradley kept us glued to our screens last night (07/06/15) when he smashed Alex Dowsett’s month old record record by over 1.5 K.M. He chose Lea Valley in London over Derby… but as the tickets sold out in seven minutes… I can see why he went for the bigger venue…. Well done Sir Bradley!