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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was watching some velodrome racing today and during a 6-8 person 8 lap race the 1st 5 laps were led by a electric pace bike. What's the purpose of this and why is it needed? If the pace bike is going to hold them back for 5 laps..then why not just start the race at 4 laps and let them go at it?

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Brussel/Kuurne? Does that make sense? It was a french feed on steephill.tv. Watched it about 11 am EST.
 

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A wheelist
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2007TarmacSL said:
Was watching some velodrome racing today and during a 6-8 person 8 lap race the 1st 5 laps were led by a electric pace bike. What's the purpose of this and why is it needed? If the pace bike is going to hold them back for 5 laps..then why not just start the race at 4 laps and let them go at it?
You were watching the Keirin - a traditional Japanese track race that's a BIG betting business over there. It's since been adopted by the UCI for its world championships and the IOC for the Olympics. Don't ask why; just accept it. It is what it is.

Edit - if they ran it the way you suggest then it wouldn't be the Keirin - they would have to call it the 2007TarmacSL. Doesn't have the same mystique eh?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keirin

YouTube "Chris Hoy" (the mastah) and Keirin.
 

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vexatious enigma
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It sounds a lot like a Keirin race. Thats just how it goes. They are paced for a certain amount of laps where the riders will jockey for position in the pack as the pacer brings up the speed each lap. Once the pace goes away the pack goes in pretty much a sprint for the last two laps.

I don't know a whole lot about keirin races (haven't found them as interesting as the individuals,) so heres a definition from FVF.
This Japanese version of the Motorpace, which is subject to parimutuel betting over there, has become very popular in the US, although, so far, without the betting. Keirin races, in which all the riders on the track jockey for position behind a single motorbike, sometimes most closely resemble the "Roller Derby" of old, with riders jostling and jabbing each other with elbows to get into the "sweet spot" behind the motorcycle. Then, just before the last lap, the motorbike pulls off the track, and the riders sprint madly to the line.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sounds like it might have been it...although while behind the pace bike no one changed position at all. Single file...very boring.
 

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vexatious enigma
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Mike T. said:
If you're part of the me-me-me generation that wants it all, then try this one -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGnLDr6jRSI
Oh man, now thats just evil there. Do you know why he did that? I read the description and it just says what happened afterwards at hearings and such.
 

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vexatious enigma
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Mike T. said:
Sore-loser hot-head. :rolleyes:
Thats too bad. Theres just no room for that kind of crap.

I kind of held off judgment for the replay of it because it looked like it could just been a botched congratulations but then I saw that he just flat out grabbed the guys bars and pulled him down. The commentators were saying he was a nice guy but it just seems like he's an ass.
 

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You were probably watching the UCI world track championships from Warsaw Poland. I thought the rolling start was the norm in the states for Nascar etc. Come to think of it the Grand Tour stages start with a neutral zone to get everyone up to speed its just not normally televised. The story is that the Japanese federation or similar made a huge donation to the UCI to get it included as an Olympic event and thats why the IOC insisted some other traditional distances the kilo? were dropped to make room.
 

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baker921 said:
The story is that the Japanese federation or similar made a huge donation to the UCI to get it included as an Olympic event and thats why the IOC insisted some other traditional distances the kilo? were dropped to make room.
The kilo was dropped to make room for BMX.
 

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waldo425 said:
I'm sure that it's a blast to be in one but its just kinda boring to watch unless theres a lot of action going on. I'm American, I want action dammit.
Dude, go to youtube, search "keirin", and watch a few.

Boring? The race is a flippin' sprint, ferfecksake. The pace laps aren't meant to be exciting, they are meant to get the race up to speed.

Want more excitement? Bet next month's paycheck on a race. That will make the action even more compelling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Does it really take 5 laps to get a bunch of guys with legs the size of trees up to speed? Drop the bike and make it a 4 lap race from the start.

Laps 1-5 booooring....laps 6-8 ....exciting.yes
 

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vexatious enigma
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2007TarmacSL said:
Does it really take 5 laps to get a bunch of guys with legs the size of trees up to speed? Drop the bike and make it a 4 lap race from the start.

Laps 1-5 booooring....laps 6-8 ....exciting.yes
Well at that point it would be just a normal scratch race, which are even more boring to me. The keirin has the jockeying and roller derby fight for the positions.
 

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2007TarmacSL said:
Does it really take 5 laps to get a bunch of guys with legs the size of trees up to speed? Drop the bike and make it a 4 lap race from the start.

Laps 1-5 booooring....laps 6-8 ....exciting.yes
You are being silly. Have you ever seen how long it takes guys in the 100-meter dash to get in the blocks? To parade horses around the track and into the starting gates? OMFUG how booooooooooooring!

You also seem to have a fundamental misunderstanding of track racing. There are several different events, each one has its own format, history, and rules. Keirin happens to come from a tradition of parimutuel betting.

This might help:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Track_cycling
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Someone else mentioned the jockeying and roller derby fighting..but there was none of that in the 1st 5 laps of the race i saw. Everyone just went single file..which is why i thought it was boring. . Maybe they were too scared to get aggressive..?
 

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Buddy, if you dont like it dont watch it, but before you pass comment, think your way through what you have said. Understand the tactics, understand the tradition. from what you have said they should never attack early on a stage or single day race, hell they should not race the first 200 km of PR the tour should be a tt and mountain top finish done over a weekend so the people dont have to be bored with a little known rider taking his shot at glory.
 
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