Thursday, March 20, 2008

The Laoshan Velodrome in Beijing, China.

Ok, I'm heading off to Beijing for the Easter holidays and I'll be back next week. So no new posts here until then.

Apparently the fixed gear thing hasn't really caught on in China yet but who knows what I will find there? Most of the world's cyclists are in China, after all. 

And just look at the pic above, Tintin was apparently riding a brakeless fixed wheel track bike in China already in 1936 when his adventures in the album The Blue Lotus did take place. 

Also, the brand new Laoshan Velodrome built for the 2008 Olympic Games look pretty neat in pictures.

"The Laoshan Velodrome track is 250 meters in length and 11 meters wide. The wood-surface track has a seven-meter race lane and a four-meter safety lane. The track is banked at between 13 degrees and 47 degrees, according to the standards set by Union Cycliste Internationale.

Track Cycling has been a part of every edition of the Olympic Games, except for the 1912 Games in Stockholm.

Track cyclists wear special "space-age" helmets and ride brakeless, fixed-gear bicycles. The helmets, which might look strange to some, are bicycle helmets adapted to minimize air resistance.

With just 90 seconds separating them, the contenders compete for time, and the cyclist who completes the course in the shortest time wins.

The Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Games saw the introduction of many new technologies and new materials, including the spokeless, carbon-fiber disc wheel. At the 1992 Barcelona Games, Britain's Chris Boardman used the latest technology available and became Britain's first Olympic cycling gold medalist since 1920. Boardman's bicycle took full advantage of carbon-fiber technology and new innovations in aerodynamics and weighed less than nine kilograms.

Track cycling races are held on an oval track -- the velodrome -- that is banked, with the outer track being higher than the inner track


Anonymous said...

hey did you go to the laoshan velodrome?

I'm going to china in a few months, and I was wondering what there is to do over there fixed gear related :)

Jussi said...

Hi, unfortunately I didn't do there after all.

There was so much stuff to do & see and the velodrome was totally on the other side of the city from where we stayed. And it's a BIG city. There wasn't so much FG related stuff there but I would recommend that you rent a bike and ride around, there were plenty of bike rental places to be found, and especially ride in and around those old hutong alleyways, they're cool.

Jussi said...

Sorry, I meant to say I didn't GO there. 8)

Anonymous said...

If any fixed gear rider comes to Beijing then contact me and let us ride together!
contact me