For the first time since 2012, the Olympic velodrome will play host to a round of the UCI Track World Cup. The world’s best riders will take to the boards of the London track from 5-7 December for the second of three rounds. Australia is atop the medal table after the first round in Guadalajara, Mexico last month closely followed by Great Britain and Germany. The Southern hemisphere team left Mexico with three gold medals in the men’s team pursuit, women’s team sprint and men’s individual sprint.
Matthew Glaetzer and Jason Kenny will reignite their battle in the sprint competitions. Glaetzer beat Kenny in two straight races in Mexico and took silver in the Keirin while the Brit missed out on a medal. Kenny will have home advantage though when it comes to London and the track that he won two Olympic medals on.
However, the pair will have to factor in the Frenchman François Pervis who was missing in the opening round. Pervis became the first man to win the Kilo, Keirin and individual sprint at the World Championships earlier this year and is the sprint world record holder. Robert Forstemann will be heading up the German’s sprint team. New Zealand team sprint world champions Ethan Michell, Sam Webster and Edward Dawkins will also be in attendance.
Chinese sprint Guo Shuang dominated the women’s sprint in Mexico after she claimed gold in the in the Keirin and silver in the women’s sprint. Guo will face Australian duo Anna Meares and Stephanie Morton and formidable German pairing Kristina Vogel and Miriam Welte. Vogel travelled to Mexico but didn’t race and will be fired up for the competition this weekend.
Laura Trott, Ed Clancy and Joanna Rowsell will lead the way for the home team in the endurance events. Joining Clancy are the two men that beat him in the Omnium event at the 2012 Olympics, Lasse Norman Hansen and Brian Coquard. The latter comes to the event despite suffering from a knee injury. Trott and Rowsell will team up together for the team pursuit, which Britain won convincingly ahead of Canada in the first round.
Belgian Jolien d’Hoore will be aiming to extend her lead in the omnium competition, after taking gold in the opening round. She is joined on the Belgian team by Jesper de Buyst and Kenny de Ketele, who come off the back of a strong six-day campaign where they won the Gent Six ahead of Iljo Keisse and Mark Cavendish. One man that won’t be there is Bradley Wiggins, who is currently focussing on his early season road ambitions.