Three Great Britain sprinters will head to Germany this weekend to compete in the Drei Bahnen Tournee – an event which has been firmly on the team's racing calendar for the past 10 years.
Matt Crampton, Jason Kenny and Callum Skinner will make the journey to the Frankfurt region of Germany and will race in the sprint and keirin events this UCI Class 1 competition. Competitions such as this will prove vital in earning vaulable points throughout the summer months in line with the new system of world cup qualifications introduced by the UCI this season.
Olympic sprint coach Iain Dyer said: “The Drei Bahnen Tournee will be a fairly good points scorer for the World Cups and the guys have got a chance to pick up qualifying points in both the sprint and keirin. They do both races on each of the three days, so it’s almost like stand alone racing each day rather than a composite of the three days.”
Drei Bahnen Tournee, which translated means ‘three tracks tour’, aims to test the riders’ ability of adapting their racing styles and tactics to a different track every day. The competition begins on the 18th May at the outdoor concrete 333m track in Oberhausen. From there, the team head to Ochelbronn which is a small 200m semi covered wooden track. Finally, they race at the track in Dudenhofen which is the home track of double world champion Jan Van Eijden, aka British Cycling’s other Olympic sprint coach, and it still boasts a cardboard cut out of the man himself. Jan will join up with the team out in Germany.
Looking ahead to the World Cup season, which begins in November in Manchester, Dyer asserts: “We need to make sure that when we reach the cut-off point for World Cup qualification (03 September) that we’ve covered as many bases as possible in regards to team selection across the World Cups.”
Asked about the riders’ form ahead of the event, Dyer explains: “It’s very early to judge, Matt and Jason are back into basic training again following the Worlds and it’s still fairly early days in the season. This will be their first race back, so we’ll see how they get on and go from there. From a coaching point of view it will be useful for us to see how the guys go to give us some pointers on what they need to work on over the summer.”
With a line-up which includes established track riders including Adam Ptacnik (Czech Republic) Pavel Keleman (Czech Republic), Hugo Haak (Netherlands), Jeff Hoogland (Netherlands) as well as Olympic medallist Maximilian Levy (Germany), Dyer predicts some good racing. “The other nations will be in the same boat as us in terms of form, so I think the racing will be strong and competitive. I’ll be looking for our guys to get stuck in to the racing, but there are no bold predictions from me at this stage of the summer season!”