By Antonio J. Salmerón
This weekend, on September 27 and 28, the second edition of the "Trofeo Internacional Ciudad de Barcelona de Pista" will take place in Barcelona, Spain. The track event will be held on the Olympic cycling track that was used during the 1992 Olympic Games. Events include omnium and sprint events. A big emphasis will be on the youth categories. There will also be racers from the Paralympics as well as the Catalonian ONCE tandem Championships.
More than 140 riders from 10 nations are expected to participate. During the presentation, the director of the organisers, Eduard Esteban, indicated the participation if well-known riders. "There will be Olympians and World Champions at the start," he said. Esteban indicated that Barcelona is putting great hopes into hosting the European track championships in 2009 and 2010.
Carme Mas, president of the Catalonian cycling federation, used the current bad weather to emphasise the need of a roof over the Horta velodrome. The request was supported by Jordi Sans, sports director of the UFEC (Unión de Federaciones Deportivas de Catalunya, Union of the Catalonian sports federations).
On the sporting side some of the racers that will participate include the Pan-American champion Michael Bratchfort and 2004 Olympic silver medalist Josep Antoni Escuredo. Junior rider Juan Peralta recently won a bronze medal at the European track championships.
Two Beijing medalists are also among the participants. Toni Tauler received silver in the Madison, with Russian Alexey Markov getting bronze in the same event. French Madison champion Damien Gaudin will add to a competitive field.
The women's field include local hero Helena Casas. The Catalan rider will compete against Frenchwomen Laurie Berthon and Camile Lenoble, Scottish Charlene Joiner, Dutchwoman Ilona Meiring and Swiss Andrea Wolfer.