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Events: Cycling



Cycling Events

When Britain's world pursuit champion Graeme Obree developed a new riding position and used a washing machine bearing to make a bike that enabled him to break the world hour record, we celebrated his ingenuity as well as his strength. It wasn't long, however, before the "Obree" riding position was banned and firmer restrictions placed on the technical development of the racing bicycle.

Since the early part of the twentieth century, the international cycle racing community has attempted to limit the technological development of racing bicycles. They have done this mainly to ensure that bicycle racing is a test of the rider and not the machine. Apart from which, it is no doubt unsettling having unknowns turning up to major cycling events with some technological advance and winning against the big names. By strictly limiting technological advances, governing bodies have been able to maintain the reputation of their champions (who they need to pull the all important crowds) and so ensure the continuing popularity of their sport. Whatever the reasoning behind the restrictions, the result is that while the rest of the world continues to make incredible technological advances in so many fields of endeavor, road and track cyclists have been left far behind. What remarkable forms would bicycles now take if that had not been the case. How fast can human beings really go under their own steam? The cycle events at these Fringe Games will help us find out.

In the Fringe Games, ingenuity and creativity will be rewarded as well as strength, tactics and technique. The development of the bicycle will be fostered by celebrating its technical excellence along with the power of the human body and mind. While riders will win medals - gold, silver and bronze - a special platinum medal will be awarded to the design team or individual deemed to have made the most significant advance in cycle engineering.


Unrestricted 100mTop
Unrestricted 100m The unrestricted 100m will reward those with an innovative mind as well as world class strength and technique. Although none of the traditional bicycle racing restrictions apply, sails and energy storage devices such as flywheels will not be permitted. All elements of the vehicle must be human-powered. Any number of riders are permitted on each cycle. A flying start is permitted, but build-up is restricted to four laps. Men's and women's categories apply. Qualifying times to be posted shortly.


1000m Individual PursuitTop
In this one-on-one test of speed and ingenuity, riders will begin with a Le Mans start from opposite sides of the track. After sprinting from the inside edge of the track to their cycle on the outside edge, riders must mount it unaided. First rider to complete 1000m wins. The same limited technical restrictions as the unrestricted 100m apply. There will be a men's and a women's category. Qualifying times to be posted shortly.


10,000m Team PursuitTop
In this dramatic team pursuit, all riders in a mixed team of four must finish the full 10,000m. Teams will start from opposite sides of the track with a standing start. The same minimal technical restrictions as in the unrestricted 100m apply. Teams may choose to ride four individual bikes or a single human powered vehicle, or any one of many other combinations. Teams must weigh up the risk of a crash with the advantages of extremely tight drafting formations or shared drive-chain systems. Qualifying times will be posted soon.


400m Hurdles PursuitTop
The 400m hurdles pursuit may prove to be the most exciting cycling event of the Fringe Games. After a standing start from opposite sides of the velodrome each rider must complete one lap, with 10 hurdles to be jumped. The hurdles will be 10cm, 20cm, 30cm, 40cm, 50cm, 10cm, 20cm, 30cm, 40cm, and 50cm high. A time penalty will be given when riders knock hurdles over. The hurdles will not be fixed solidly to the ground. Any type of bicycle may be used. The hurdles may be jumped with a bunny-hop or cyclo-cross-style leap. Riders may choose to knock over one or two hurdles rather than decelerate for a clean jump. Men's and women's categories apply.


Freestyle TrialsTop
A dynamic mixture of observed trials and freestyle riding. Riders must negotiate obstacles at their own pace without putting a foot down, called "dabbing". Riders will also be scored according to the style with which they clear the course (eg: pirouettes will improve a rider's score). Men's and women's categories apply. A plan of the riding area will be posted in the near future.


Synchronized CyclingTop
In this dramatic event, pairs of riders perform to music of their choice for three minutes. A panel of judges will award points for style, technical difficulty and interpretation. Many freestyle and observed trials skills are used in synchronized cycling. This event will be held on a flat finely mown grass circle 20 metres in diameter. There will be men's, women's and mixed pairs categories.


Slalom RelayTop
The slalom relay gives countries or interest groups a chance to pool their strongest and most skilled cyclists into representative teams. Each individual from a four-person mixed team must complete the slalom twice (from one end of the ground to the other and back). The riding surface is grass. There will be eight gates to negotiate. While a strong sprint off the start line is important, the ability to carry speed smoothly through each gate is critical.


Unicycle 100m SprintTop
As simple as the name implies, this race is a 100m sprint for unicycles of any size. A standing start will be used throughout a series of heats leading up to an eight-rider final. Very fast and furious. In addition to helmets, protective padding on hands, elbows and knees will be mandatory. Qualifying times will be posted soon.


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