May 16, 2024 Robert Annis
May 16, 2024 Robert Annis

The best track cycling reams and their triumphs

From legendary athletes to strategic brilliance: Dive into the world of track cycling as we unravel the stories behind the best track cycling teams.

The best track cycling reams and their triumphs Triumphs of the best track cycling teams

The Olympics represents the best of sport, when athletes battle for not only individual (or team) glory, but, perhaps more importantly, national pride. The battle for track cycling supremacy should be fierce, with multiple teams and individual athletes capable of winning gold. So who will win? 

Contents

Exploring the Realm of Track Cycling Teams

Track cycling action happens on a banked oval track called a velodrome. The Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines Velodrome will host this year’s Olympics, nearly a decade after it hosted the World Championships in 2015. Although velodrome sizes can vary between 133m-500m, Olympic regulations are specific – tracks must be exactly 250m (820 feet). 

  

Designed by renowned architect Ralph Schürmann, the Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines Velodrome “was specially developed to become one of the fastest in the world,” per the venue’s website. Theoretically, competitors can safely reach a mind-boggling 85kph (52mph). Rest assured, no world record will be safe this July. 

  

Unlike road bike racing, where the first rider to cross the finish line is the winner, many track cycling events have specific rules that might not be immediately evident to the average person. 

Men's Pinnacle: Top Track Cycling Teams

Last year, the Danish men’s team pursuit riders won the world championship on their Canyon Speedmax CFR Track bikes, besting second-place Italy by more than two seconds. They’ll look to capture Olympic gold this year. 

The Netherlands has built an incredible cycling culture in their country, and their track cycling team isn’t too bad either, winning gold medals in the individual and team sprint, as well as the Madison at last year’s world championships. The Italian men’s team led by Filippo Ganna will be dangerous in the individual and team pursuits. 

The Canyon-sponsored USA men’s team aren’t currently favored in any Olympic race – the last American male to win gold in a track-cycling Olympic or world championship event was individual pursuit rider Ashton Lambie in 2021 – but they could potentially shock the field in Paris with a podium-worthy performance. Their best shot might be the omnium; Grant Koontz and Peter Moore won the gold medal for that event during the most recent Pan-American games. 

Breathtaking speed and precision set new milestones in track cycling history Breathtaking speed and precision set new milestones in track cycling history

Women's Excellence: Leading Track Cycling Teams

Team USA’s Chloe Dygert has won world championships in both the individual and team pursuit multiple times in her career, including an individual gold medal last year in Glasgow. Her teammate, Jennifer Valente, won the omnium at both the Tokyo Olympics and last year’s worlds and should be the favorite to once again win Olympic gold in Paris. 

Great Britain has been a dominant track cycling force for years; at last year’s world championships, they took home nine medals (five gold), with the women’s team pursuit and Madison teams winning their respective races and Emma Finucane winning the women’s sprint race. Germany and their star rider Lea Friedrich will be in the medal mix for multiple events. 

Record-Breaking Feats in Track Cycling

At the 2020 world championships in Berlin, Dygert broke the women’s world record for the 3,000m individual pursuit, stopping the clock at 3:16.937. At last year’s world championships, she was about a second slower enroute to another gold medal. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Dygert break her own record atop a Speedmax CFR Track in Paris this July. 

Ganna holds the current world record in the Individual pursuit with a time of 3:59.636 and along with the Italian national team, the team pursuit record at 3:42.032. Those times would be tough to beat, but the Italian may do it in Paris. 

The German women’s team owns the current world records in both the team pursuit (4:04.242) and the team sprint (45.848). 

Speedmax CFR Track in action Speedmax CFR Track in action

Global Icons: Best Athletes and Team Dynamics

Although the fastest track cyclists in the world will be aiming for individual gold medals, they will also be trying to help their respective national teams in other ways as well. Many times, the best athletes are also the hardest working; they’ll be the first one at the velodrome in the morning and the last to leave. They demand accountability from themselves and their teammates. Their presence makes their teammates want to up their game. There’s also an element of friendly competition as well; teammate or not, who doesn’t want to be the absolute best in their sport? 

Having a top-level competitor on your team also raises the confidence level of the other riders. If your team-sprint teammate also happens to be one of the best individual sprinters at the competition, it can’t help but boost your confidence that you’ll cross the finish line first. 

Strategies Behind Success

Winning gold doesn’t just happen; it takes an unbelievable amount of dedication, teamwork, strategy, and the right equipment. Behind every great athlete or team, there’s an equally great support staff: coaches, doctors, nutritionists, physiologists, and more. In the months and years before a major competition like the Olympics, most staff try to get each athlete into top physical form, while the coaches discuss strategy and work through various possible scenarios. As the rider crosses the finish line of their race, the team wants to know that everyone involved did their absolute best to achieve the absolute best possible result. 

Just like how gold medals aren’t won in a vacuum, the best bikes aren’t designed and built without a huge team effort between engineers, athletes, and production staff. Taking what it learned from its exceptionally fast line of road bikes, Canyon engineers teamed with aerodynamic experts Swiss Side to optimize road bike geometry for the track. Using input from Dygert, her Team USA teammates, and the Danish national track-cycling team, they were able to make subtle tweaks to make the Speedmax CFR Track the fastest bike on the velodrome. 

Cutting-Edge Design: The Canyon Speedmax CFR Track Bike - A technological marvel that propels teams to success at the highest level.   Cutting-Edge Design: The Canyon Speedmax CFR Track Bike - A technological marvel that propels teams to success at the highest level.

Track bike at the highest level: Canyon Speedmax CFR Track

Whether you’re vying for a gold medal at an international competition or the top step of your local velodrome’s mid-week race series, the Speedmax CFR Track is a supremely fast and versatile option. The materials and geometry make it one of the most aerodynamic road bikes to ever rocket across a velodrome, while still able to withstand the punishing torque sprinters put on the frame.  

The CFR Track’s cockpit, aka the Pro Extension System, is incredibly adjustable to meet the needs and comfort of individual competitors like you. The crank-based SRM power meter will tell you precisely how many watts you’re producing while on the track. The bike comes set up for individual track races, but by swapping out the cockpit and switching wheelsets, it’s ready for group racing events like the omnium. Along with hard work and dedication, this bike will put you in the best possible position to succeed.  

Discover our Road Bikes

Did this article help?

Thank you for your feedback

By subscribing to our newsletter, you are agreeing to our Data Protection Statement .
  • Robert Annis
    About the author

    Robert Annis

    Robert Annis is an award-winning outdoor-travel journalist. As an experienced writer and sport enthusiast he writes content that is inspiring with focus on road biking. You might have read Robert's articles in Bicycling, National Geographic, Outside, Travel + Leisure, Inside Hook, AARP, Midwest Living, Sierra, Hemispheres, Departures, Lonely Planet, Afar, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, RV Magazine, and Hidden Compass.

Related Stories

Apr 26, 2024
Stay up-to-date with the latest news, and route details for the Tour de France Femmes 2024. Get all the updates on the highly anticipated women's cycling event.
Apr 22, 2024
Intrigued about track cycling, but don’t understand the rules of any of the events? We have you covered.
Apr 22, 2024
Ever wondered what the yellow, green, polka dot and white jerseys mean at the Tour de France?
Apr 17, 2024
Get ready to dive into the Giro d'Italia 2024! We'll cover everything from the race routes and stages to the teams competing for glory.
Content is loading
Loading animation image