Thursday 2 – Tuesday 7 August
Olympic Park – Velodrome
Number of medal events
Ten: men’s and women’s Keirin, Sprint, Omnium, Team Pursuit and Team Sprint.
Number of competitors
188: 104 men; 84 women
Each country is limited to nine men and seven women, equating to one athlete/team in each event.
Field of play
The track at the Velodrome is a 250m oval, banked from 12 degrees at its shallowest point to 42 degrees at its steepest, so the riders are always perpendicular to the track, even as they go round corners.
Track Cycling at the Olympic Games
Currently enjoying a boom in popularity, the action-packed sport of Track Cycling has featured at every Games but one since the first modern Olympic Games in 1896. Women’s Track Cycling joined the Olympic programme in 1988.
Find out more about Track Cycling at the Olympic Games on the International Olympic Committee website.
There are 10 Olympic Track Cycling events (five for men, five for women), which between them test speed, endurance and teamwork. The Sprint consists of a series of three-lap races, with riders racing head-to-head. The Keirin features up to seven riders sprinting for victory, after following a pacing motorcycle at the beginning of the race.
There are two team events: the Team Sprint, with teams of three for the men’s competition and teams of two for the women, and the Team Pursuit, which is held over 16 laps for men and 12 laps for women. Finally, there’s the Omnium. Making its Olympic debut at London 2012, the Omnium features individual riders competing against each other across six different elements on the track.
For a complete set of rules, please refer to the website of the International Cycling Union (UCI), governing body for the sport.
There are a host of officials (or commissaires) for Olympic Track Cycling, including start and finish judges, referees, timekeepers and scorers.
Derny – the pacing motorcycle used in Keirin races
Gear ratio – the number of cogs on the front chainring divided by the number of cogs on the rear sprocket
If you want to find out about Track Cycling in your country, including clubs, facilities and coaching schemes, check the website of your National Governing Body. To find out how you can get involved in Track Cycling in the UK, go to thegamesandbeyond.com
For more information on the Track Cycling competition at London 2012 and the rules, go to the website of the International Cycling Union (UCI), governing body for the sport.