The 2007 Australian Track Cycling Championships kick off on Monday at Sydney's Dunc Gray Velodrome, where nearly 200 of Australia's most talented cyclists will contest a full program of events in elite, junior U19 and AWD (Athletes with a Disability) categories.
The senior ranks will see dual Olympic and Commonwealth Games champion Ryan Bayley line up, along with 2006 triple junior World Champion, Cameron Meyer, who recently graduated to the senior ranks. Meyer has made the transition successfully, and at the recent Los Angeles round of the World Cup, the 19 year-old Meyer claimed gold in the points race.
Commonwealth Games kilometre time trial champion and World Championship silver medallist, Ben Kersten, (NSW) continues his comeback from back surgery, and will be out to defend the four titles he won in 2006 (kilometre, sprint, keirin and teams sprint) and add the omnium to his resume.
2007 will mark the first time the omnium will be a part of the programme, after it was added to this year's World Championships schedule by the UCI (International Cycling Union). It is designed for the most versatile track cyclists and consists of five events held on the one day, the 1km time trial, flying 200m time trial, 5km scratch race, 3km individual pursuit and wrapping up with a points race over 15km.
Victoria's team will boast newly crowned Australian road race champion, Katie Mactier, aiming for her fifth straight title crown in the 3km individual pursuit. Mactier, an Olympic silver medallist, Commonwealth Games champion and 2005 World Champion, wants to reclaim gold in the event next month at the World Championships in Majorca.
Olympic and Commonwealth champion Anna Meares will be back in Sydney in a bid to add to her already impressive collection of 13 Australian Titles on the track. In November, she set the Dunc Gray Velodrome alight with a World Record ride for the 500m time trial, eclipsing the mark she set in Athens and securing the gold medal at the Sydney World Cup.
The AWD competition will boast a trio of reigning World Champions in Michael Gallagher (VIC) who is the current World Record holder for the 4km individual pursuit and one kilometre time trial in the LC1 division and is tipped to possible better at least one of his records. Also lining up is tandem pairing of Lindy Hou (visually impaired) and Toireasa Gallagher (sighted pilot) who last year won the 3km pursuit and the road race at the World Championships in Switzerland.