WORLD CUP IN FOCUS: GB LOOKING TO KEEP EARLY SEASON MOMENTUM GOING IN BERLIN

The new TISSOT UCI Track World Cup season moves onto its third stage this weekend in Germany with cycling’s elite set to go head to head in Berlin.

Three riveting days of top quality action are in store, but do you know your keirin from your Madison and a points race from a scratch?

We’ve put together a handy one-stop guide to make sure you’re in the know ahead of an exciting first night of competition.

What’s it all about?

The TISSOT UCI Track World Cup is a winter tournament in which countries from across the globe compete for points in a series of sprint and endurance races.

Riders earn themselves UCI ranking points depending on where they finish in each race, with a maximum 500 points up for grabs. At the end of the process, the top-placed individual racers and nations will be crowned at the season finale in Hong Kong.

Winners last season, this weekend’s hosts Germany will no doubt be hoping for a profitable three days to boost their chances of retaining their title.

After Sunday’s conclusion in Berlin, the competition then heads to London on December 14 before a short Christmas hiatus. The first stage of 2019 gets under way in New Zealand on January 18.

The events to watch

Races are a mixture of sprint and endurance events across the three days, with the fastest track cyclists on the planet competing in the team and individual sprints.

Sprinters will also fancy their chances in the keirin, where riders race for the line after a speed-controlled start behind a motorised pacer.

There is also a time trial to watch out for, which sees women compete over 500 metres and the men battle against the clock over the slightly longer 1km.

The opening night in Germany will also see both the men and women take on the team pursuit, where teams of four work in tandem to hunt down a team that starts on the opposite side of the track.

Brits in action

Team GB have named a strong squad as they look to continue their impressive start to the new campaign.

Their challenge will be spearheaded by the likes of Olympic champion Laura Kenny, Katie Archibald and Emily Nelson, while current national road race champion Jess Roberts makes her Track World Cup debut in Berlin.

Meanwhile, Kenny’s husband, Jason – also an Olympic champion – features in the men’s sprint squad alongside another Rio 2016 gold medallist in Phil Hindes.

Endurance riders Ed Clancy, Charlie Tanfield and Ethan Hayter are among the other star names in the men’s squad.

Schedule

Friday 30 November – session one: 11:00-17:00 (first round and qualifying)

Friday 30 November – session two: 18:30-21:30 (team sprint and team pursuit finals)

Saturday 1 December – session one: 12:00-16:30 (first round and qualifying)

Saturday 1 December – session two: 18:00-21:30 (women’s sprint, women’s omnium, men’s Madison and men’s keirin finals)

Sunday 2 December – session one: 10:00-14:30 (first round and qualifying)

Sunday 2 December – session two: 15:30-19:00 (men’s sprint, women’s Madison, men’s omnium and women’s keirin finals)