After a day of torrential rain, today dawned to crystal clear blue skies. It was also the first day of the Laoshan Olympic Cycling Center events. Starting from today until Aug 19 there will be track cycling events, followed by BMX (a first time Olympic medal sport) on Aug 20-21 and finally women’s MTB racing on 22nd and men MTB on 23rd.
Trek is fortunate to have a retail store near the venue, which will also host athletes from several nations. As the cycling athletes come to ride for their country and not for their trade team, they will often travel with some personal staff, including soigneurs and mechanics. This can presents a challenge in that each national federation only is allotted a finite number of credentials/passes and therefore, these personal staff and mechanics have to scramble to find a place to serve their athletes. For this year’s Olympic Games Trek will provide a space for mechanics to work on the bikes of many athletes and a lounge where the athletes can not only take a rest, but also take a shower, get a message and take some refreshment. Additionally, we are providing other services from this site to several federations and VIPs. Today’s guests included Davis Phinney, Connie Carpenter, the top brass from USA Cycling and on-air expert commentator Paul Sherwin.
Track cycling. What a fun and exciting sport. Tonight saw preliminary rounds and finals of men’s team sprint and preliminary heats for men and women’s individual pursuit. Some US athletes included both Taylor Phinney (son of the winningest US male racer Davis Phinney and long time pro and 1984 gold medalist Connie Carpenter) and World Champion Sarah Hammer. Both of them appeared to struggle in their heats, but qualified for the next round. In the men’s team sprint it came down to Great Britain against France. All the big talk by the French just made their defeat all the more sweet for the Brits! As strong as they looked this evening, I am sure we are certain to see many more medals for Great Britain…great job….bring it on!