Olympic Champion Chris Hoy has a date with his "first love" May 12 in La Paz, Bolivia -- the Kilometre. He will attempt to break the world record in what will be "my farewell to an event that has shaped my sporting life."
Hoy, who is currently training in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, called the attempt a "once in a lifetime thing." He will have to ride faster that 58.875 seconds to take the record. He has twice ridden the non-altitude kilometre at one minute.
According to britishcycling.org.uk, Hoy travelled the end of April to the hypobaric chamber at the UK Sport Centre of Excellence in Bisham Abbey. Things were setup there to replicate the conditions in La Paz. "I spent an hour and 40 minutes in the chamber and did my full competition warm-up drill and, touch wood, felt pretty good. I then came out and did two of my full-on lactic tests which I occasionally endure to see exactly where I am," he told the Telegraph newspaper.
Hoy's father, David, explained, "It's like Chris is a teenager again, and we're loading up the car and setting off on an adventure, not really knowing where we'll stay or how it'll all turn out."
One of the biggest unknown factors is how he react to the altitude. The air in La Paz is said to have only 67% of the oxygen as sea level air, and it is possible that he could lose consciousness. Hoy will have medical support on the scene, including a body bag with its own oxygen supply.
"I wouldn't say I'm scared, but I am apprehensive," Hoy told the newspaper. "There are risks involved, and I am aware of them, but I'll have full medical support. It's going to be grim, I know that, but if you've got the world record, you've got the world record. You can handle a bit of pain then."
Hoy is scheduled to fly to Bolivia on May 11 and go for the record on the next day. If he is successful, he will also try for two other records: the flying 500 metres (25.850"), and the flying 200 metres (9.772").