Track Cycling is an exhilarating bicycle racing sport usually held on specially built banked tracks or velodromes using track bicycles. The bicycles are fixed gear bikes with no brakes, the bike is propelled or slowed down by the pedal strokes of the cyclist.
In Ireland there are three outdoor velodromes:
- Eamonn Ceannt Park, Sundrive Road, Crumlin, Dublin 12
- Orangefield, Belfast
- Kanturk, Co. Cork
Despite not having an indoor velodrome yet, Ireland has some very successful track cyclists, including 2013 Scratch Race World Champion, Martyn Irvine.
Below is a list of some of the races that take place on the track.
Sprint races are generally between 8 and 10 laps in length and focus on raw sprinting power and race tactics over a small number of laps to defeat opponents. Sprint riders will train specifically to compete in races of this length and will not compete in longer endurance races.
Main Sprint Events
- Team sprint
- Track time trial
Endurance races are held over much longer distances. While these primarily test the riders endurance abilities, the ability to sprint effectively is also required in the Madison, Points Race and Scratch Race. The length of these races varies from 12–16 laps for the Individual and Team Pursuit races, up to 200 laps for a full length Madison race in World Championships or Olympic Games.
Main Endurance Events
- Individual pursuit
- Team pursuit
- Scratch race
- Points race
- Handicap or Hare and Hounds
- Miss and Out, elimination or 'Devil Take the Hindmost'