The dust had just about settled on another successful International weekend of world class track racing when it was back to Sundrive for a change of pace from full on racing to training with a new slant for the Madison.
So what is the Madison ? Check out this link for the low down on Madison racing :
With the Madison event being added to the Olympics in Tokyo for the 2020 games, Ireland are already at a disadvantage to many other nations, as we don’t have a Madison championships, which leaves our elite riders 100 points down in qualification points to other nations who hold an annual Madison champs.
In order to address this, it has been decided to add the Madison to our National Championships as a demonstration event for 2017 with the plan of having a fully sanctioned event in 2018.
In order to get our domestic riders up to speed with the ins and outs of the Madison, the Irish Elite Madison track partnership of Felix English and Fintan Ryan(no stranger to Sundrive) kindly came down to Sundrive Vélodrome, after a busy weekend of lung busting racing, along with coach Mark Kiely, to demonstrate and run a madison master class to instruct the riders all about the finer points of a Madison race.
Despite the ‘soft’ Irish conditions on the night, 28 of our Sundrive regulars showed up eager and ready to learn.
The evening kicked off on the grass with a short run through by Fintan and Felix on the correct hand sling technique, which is crucial to the smooth transition between riders when changing in and out of the race.
After a short talk, the riders took to the track to try out the hand sling under the watchful eyes of Fintan and Felix who rode with the group giving advice and encouragement.
After a short period of time followed by some tentative changes and a few nervous moments, the riders were taking to the hand sling changes like ducks to water.
It was great to see so many smiling faces as the riders were coming off the track, with everyone getting so much from the evening.
The overall feedback was very positive with many riders looking forward already to the next Madison session, which is planned for the end of July.
Many thanks to Fintan, Felix, Mark, Hugh, The Track Commission and all who made it a hugely successful night.
Full photo album to follow tomorrow.