Author Topic: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb  (Read 7113 times)

Fidgetbuzz

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #50 on: February 18, 2012, 01:06:12 am »
Fidgetbuzz picked me as his "OAP" friend (Oldies rates) and took me along for this evening's events.

What a brilliant atmosphere. Deafening at times - esp the Women's Team event. I liked the live Twitter feed on the main screens; "#twclondon - Check out the German's thighs. Are they for real?"


IMAG0307 by Pelotonhound, on Flickr



More rubbish mobile phone snaps here: Clickity

hey that is me there !!
I was an accountant until I discovered Audax !!

jane

  • Mad pie-hating female
Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #51 on: February 18, 2012, 07:52:39 am »

I am probably the one of the least patriotic people on the planet but still.  For some reason, I feel quite proud of them. And the team pursuit trio. 
Terrific!  Absolutely terriffic! Yayyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!

And that track looks pretty fast.  I expect a few Olympic records may fall this summer.



Wowbagger

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #52 on: February 18, 2012, 09:49:23 am »
Very gratifying, isn't it? I feel the same way. I think it's because it's an activity you care about and are involved in. The only other activity in which I really support England / Britain is in chess.

I'm hoping that the British cycling team do so well that the knock-on effect is that yer average joe public driver actually starts to take a bit more notice of cyclists on the road.
Oh, Bach without any doubt. Bach every time for me.

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #53 on: February 18, 2012, 08:09:00 pm »
I'm watching this on the telly now. Exciting roundy-roundy racing apart and everything, just how tall isn't Chris Boardman*? I always thought he was at least a normal-sized geezer, but it looks like he's standing in a hole, next to the presenter. Obviously stature isn't an issue when it comes to going fast considering how Hoy just beat Rene Enders (the 5'4'' German with even bigger thighs than him!).

*Full disclosure - I'm only 5'7'' so glass houses, stones, etc.
'Something....something.... Something about racing bicycles, but really a profound metaphor about life itself.'  Tim Krabbé. Possibly

Mrs Pingu

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #54 on: February 18, 2012, 08:42:49 pm »
Nah, Jake Humphreys is pretty huge (6'4" according to teh internets)
Do not clench. It only makes it worse.

robgul

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #55 on: February 18, 2012, 09:29:16 pm »
Been today to the daytime session - £10 ticket, 4th row from the front dead opposite the finish line.  Superb.

Ratings on the day -

Venue :  10 out of 10
Racing :  10 out of 10
Organisation within the velodrome :  8 out of 10
Organisation outside the velodrome :  -10 out of 10

... a fantastic day of racing in a fantastic venue but the arrangements getting in and out were an absolute, total shambles
 .. viz : arrived at Stratford International Station (the "official" Olympic station) .. NO SIGNS whatsoever for the Velodrome, or Olympic Park ... asked a Station bloke "Up those steps and past the shops mate" ... still no signs. 

Asked another bloke with orange jacket with "Olympic Park" printed on the back "Dunno, what's a velodrome" [Yes, REALLY] - eventually found the way through a tortuous route to the shuttle buses and to the velodrome.

Getting the bus back was chaos too ... hundreds of "helpers" in high-viz jackets with not a brain (or in fairness no training) between them. 

The experience outside the velodrome took the edge off the day  :(

Still, we've been, enjoyed the cycling ... and felt relieved that we hadn't got tickets for the actual Olympics.

Rob

Rhys W

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #56 on: February 18, 2012, 09:35:42 pm »
Amazing ride by Laura Trott in the elimination race. Looked liked she was doing everything wrong, having to come round the long way every other lap, but kept doing it right until the end. Chapeau!

Tim Hall

  • I want to eat the fleeting shade of your lashes
Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #57 on: February 18, 2012, 09:36:23 pm »
Oh yes. Nail biting stuff, followed by lots of whooping.
There are two ways you can get exercise out of a bicycle: you can
"overhaul" it, or you can ride it.  (Jerome K Jerome)

Rhys W

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #58 on: February 18, 2012, 09:39:37 pm »
I'm watching this on the telly now. Exciting roundy-roundy racing apart and everything, just how tall isn't Chris Boardman*? I always thought he was at least a normal-sized geezer, but it looks like he's standing in a hole, next to the presenter.

I've met Dani King, she's obviously been given a box to stand on!

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #59 on: February 18, 2012, 11:09:18 pm »
According to Iain Dyer (sprint coach) Sir Hoy hit 49mph in the keirin. Christ  :o
Working my way up to inferior.

Speshact

  • Charlie
Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #60 on: February 18, 2012, 11:50:06 pm »
Had a brilliant evening at the Velodrome. And what a final race the Elimination was!

Fidgetbuzz

  • L sp MOON. 1st R sp MARS . At X SO sp STARS
Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #61 on: February 19, 2012, 12:15:59 am »
Another visit this evening - great evening - Rowsell and Trott are surely part of a continuing success story.
Sir Chris can still do it - fantastic
But have we seen the last of Vicky as our top sprinter- 5 sprint rides tonight - only 1 win.
I was an accountant until I discovered Audax !!

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #62 on: February 19, 2012, 01:46:07 pm »
Mens Sprint Quals - Hoy 9.932 They just showed it on BBC News 24 and the stupid cow presenter said "Sorry I think that was fast forward" Twatess.
Working my way up to inferior.

her_welshness

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #63 on: February 19, 2012, 03:42:49 pm »
Watching Laura Trott was an absolute thrill, even my husband enjoyed watching it. She had a bloody great strategy there.

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #64 on: February 19, 2012, 04:06:18 pm »
Mens Sprint Quals - Hoy 9.932 They just showed it on BBC News 24 and the stupid cow presenter said "Sorry I think that was fast forward" Twatess.

No need to transform that term to a feminine form, it couldn't be more female than it is already.

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #65 on: February 19, 2012, 04:21:05 pm »
Considering it's a Test Event for the Olympics, I was very surprised to see how little testing was going on.

For example. There was no requirement to fill in any questionnaires or "How was it for you?" type forms. The nice glossy programmes were free. Surely they could have charged a tenner with a money-back if you fill in a questionnaire.

One of the key questions surely should have been "How did you get here?". How can they possibly know whether the public transport provision will be adequate if they aren't testing it now?

Also - the stadium WiFi is obviously hosted in New York as the time on my phone immediately changed from 19:15 to 14:15 when I logged on to it. It was also very slow.

The "What's a velodrome?" experience from up-thread beggars belief  :facepalm:.

Signage is dreadful - but that may be because it's still a building site. I'm sure "OP SYS VAC 122 ->" means something to contractors.

I remarked to Fidgebuzz as we looked at the various wonders around the Olympic Park, from the bus - "So. This is what £9bn of Government Debt buys you these days..."

robgul

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #66 on: February 19, 2012, 04:39:07 pm »
.. another "amusing" issue on Saturday was the temperature control ... when we got there at about 1045 (after the "where is it" saga from the station) it was pretty warm - about 1230 it suddenly got colder, with a noticeable breeze (inside the building) ....

Turns out that the wind whistling round the Olympic site was blasting the velodrome and coming in to the building as the entrance/exit doors were opened and closed

Leaving to go home was brilliant .... the exit was via two sets of glass doors with a space between them ... a "guard" held the outside doors closed while another guard opened the inner door and filled the space with people, about 30 ... then held the inner door closed while the outer door was opened to let the people out (we did wonder if we were going to be beamed direct to the station  ;D)

As Chris S says - to not ask for feedback as "London Prepares" (sic) is a master-stoke of incompetence ... I have to say that the free "programme" was a surprise ... except it wasn't a programme of events at all ... just a magazine paid for by loads of advertising ... it had some useful stuff for track newbies, like the lines around the boards and how some of the events worked.

Rob

her_welshness

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #67 on: February 19, 2012, 05:06:06 pm »
Hoy was just awesome then, and he has the 2nd best pair of legs in cycling  :thumbsup:

Fidgetbuzz

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #68 on: February 19, 2012, 08:54:07 pm »
Considering it's a Test Event for the Olympics, I was very surprised to see how little testing was going on.

For example. There was no requirement to fill in any questionnaires or "How was it for you?" type forms. The nice glossy programmes were free. Surely they could have charged a tenner with a money-back if you fill in a questionnaire.

One of the key questions surely should have been "How did you get here?". How can they possibly know whether the public transport provision will be adequate if they aren't testing it now?

Also - the stadium WiFi is obviously hosted in New York as the time on my phone immediately changed from 19:15 to 14:15 when I logged on to it. It was also very slow.

The "What's a velodrome?" experience from up-thread beggars belief  :facepalm:.

Signage is dreadful - but that may be because it's still a building site. I'm sure "OP SYS VAC 122 ->" means something to contractors.

I remarked to Fidgebuzz as we looked at the various wonders around the Olympic Park, from the bus - "So. This is what £9bn of Government Debt buys you these days..."

I had an online questionnaire to complete today. So some ticket buyers are being followed up with questionnaires.  How did you get here was one of the questions - but there was no wifi query.
Signage was also covered - separate questions --outside site, inside site and in velodrome. I do have a follow up web address - going to pass it to you Chris - to see whether they will include you in their survey.
I was an accountant until I discovered Audax !!

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #69 on: February 19, 2012, 09:42:00 pm »
I had an online questionnaire to complete today. So some ticket buyers are being followed up with questionnaires.  How did you get here was one of the questions - but there was no wifi query.
Signage was also covered - separate questions --outside site, inside site and in velodrome. I do have a follow up web address - going to pass it to you Chris - to see whether they will include you in their survey.

Excellent! Thanks.

fuzzy (retd.) AAGE

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #70 on: February 20, 2012, 08:58:14 am »
We had tickets for both sessions on Saturday and a bloody awesome day it was. Sir Chris certanly knows how to ramp up the tension in the keirin :o

Laura Trott was fantastic in the elimination race.

Jo Rowsell, well, what can I say. Could she be the new Golden Girl of GB track cycling? The noise that followed her round the track in her individual pursuit final was awesome. It was like a vocal version of the Mexican Wave, with the volume being loudest exactly where she was riding. It gave me goosebumps.

I think the venue is the business. Our seats for session 1 were about 2 meters after the finish line, against the barrier so a brilliant view (if you can deal with the bobbing up and down to see past the railing) in block 106, so not a million miles form you Robgul. For the evening session, we were a few blocks further over, a couple of meters before the pursuit start line, row 2 block 109. A cracking view.

A few people in grey tops were doing the rounds early in the morning session with questionaires, so feedback was being sought.

Matt Crampton had a significant off in one of his keirin rounds and his back wheel seem,s to have taken a fair old divot out of the boards. Gaffer tape seems to hold the velodrome together in these circumstances ;D

All in all, a great day out and well done to all the competitors.
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If it ain't bad for you it ain't worth doing

LEE

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #71 on: February 20, 2012, 09:16:56 am »
A great weekend of racing (only on TV for me).

What always surprises me is that the British cyclists seem rather "slight" in comparison to the other nations.  Obviously they all have thighs like trees but not to the same extremes as the others.  See Anna Mears stood next to Pendelton for an extreme example.  Even Hoy looks relatively "normal" given his incredible dominance in the sport.

I wonder whether this is a difference in training techniques.  Whatever it is it proves you don't need to look like a 1970's Russian powerlifter to succeed.

JT

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #72 on: February 20, 2012, 09:48:22 am »
We went on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and the only day we had a problem queuing for the buses was leaving on Friday night.

The velodrome is very good but not perfect. The sight lines from the front row are very poor everywhere apart from the very centre blocks. The PA is virtually inaudible in the back rows of the upper tier - not a volume issue but just so much reverb and the announcers talking too quickly. The air-lock doors are needed because all the doors open straight onto the concourse (if you've been to Manchester you'll know that the veldrome/concourse are seperated by a wall where the doors are). On Friday the stewards were not aware that they should only be using the air-lock doors during the sessions hence massive temperature fluctuations. This won't be as much of an issue in August but that will probably be the only time in the building's lifetime when it used for a major event in the summer. The toilets are terrible - there's more of them than in most velodromes but using troughs instead of urinals made them stink and only have one hand dryer (even if it was an air blade). The low central roof with high side means they can't lower the podium paraphernalia (flags, sponsor backdrop) as storing it in the ceiling would obscure the track for people in the upper tier. So there were no flags being raised during the anthems. On a related note, it's usual to stand for a country's national anthem you ignorant southern gits! ;-) The food concessions were an absolute rip-off (other countries don't do this - why do we?). There's no bar and the concourse is too narrow for a 6000 capacity venue.

I love the building from the outside but functionally it's a slave to the design.

Despite all that it is still great and the track and building are fast which spurs the riders on. Plus we were home 75 minutes after leaving Westfield which is brilliant.

The racing was pretty good but the real test will be in April at the Worlds.
a great mind thinks alike

David Martin

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Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #73 on: February 20, 2012, 09:49:39 am »
Best tweet from @TelegraphCycling "Severe crosswinds just caused a split in the queue outside the London Velodrome. All back in one strung out line now."
"By creating we think. By living we learn" - Patrick Geddes

Re: London 2012 Prepares - Track Cycling in Feb
« Reply #74 on: February 20, 2012, 08:59:39 pm »
Well - we got there !!!!... eventually. I only managed to get tickets for the Sunday this year and that was on the re-release a week or so ago. In the past I've always managed to get tickets for Manchester for 2 if not 3 days and made a long weekend of it.

I came to see this:


Unfortunately, at the critical times - I tended to see this:


It was a great day's racing, but I wasn't impressed with the venue. I was rather surprised when we got there that, in our section of the crowd at least, we were the only people who hadn't brought flags and banners. However, we were the only people in the same group who seemed to know which finish line was being used for which event... Everyone has got to start somewhere, and I'm all for expanding the popularity of track cycling as a sport, but I must say that I preferred the camaraderie of a knowledgeable Manchester audience to the partisan ignorance that was being displayed all around me. I rather wish that the organisers had limited the use of "restricted items", particularly large flags.

It also annoyed me that, although tickets seemed to be as hard to get this year as hell's teeth, large sections of the best seats (by the finish lines) seemed to be unoccupied for much of the event. If you don't believe me - count the empty seats in the picture below - it was taken just before the mid afternoon break. They can't have all been at the bar... If this is the result of corporate sponsorship - I'm not impressed.


Overall, the organisation wasn't too bad - the airlock doors were amusing - everyone discovers something wrong at an inaugural event. However, the catering was abysmal. First thing Sunday morning and you couldn't buy white coffee - only black. Someone had forgotten to order the milk. By lunch time things had only improved slightly - white coffee  was ok, but not a latte (not enough milk for those). Oh, and just don't get me going (as a Yorkshireman) about the prices. Rip off Britain has arrived.

All in all, I rather hope that, once the Olympic hoo ha is over and done with, track cycling might just slip back into relative obscurity, so that we can see future events back at Manchester where you can both get tickets and get an unobstructed view of the proceedings.