The scene is set for the 2012 UCI World Masters Track Championships taking place at Manchester's National Cycling Centre from Saturday 6 October to 14 October.
6 October is set aside as an official training day when many of the 400 entrants from 27 nations will get a 90 minute session to familiarise themselves with the boards of the famous Manchester Velodrome. With sessions from eight in the morning through to ten in the evening this will be a very busy time as riders arrive to stake their place in the track centre for the week and to look forward to the opportunity to win a coveted UCI World Championship Rainbow Jersey in their chosen events. They can compete in one or all of the main titles, Time Trial, Sprint, Individual Pursuit, Points Race and Scratch Race.
There will also be a Team Sprint Championship for the men and a further Team Sprint test event for the women. Another new event this year will be an Open Team Pursuit, again a test event to assess the worthiness of including this in future years as an official championship.
The events are open to all riders aged 35 and over and the popularity of these is again shown by the distances many will be travelling to the championships. Entries from abroad have been received from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA.
Then there is a strong entry from Great Britain with many well-known home grown names taking part such as Willi Moore, Geoff Cooke, Dave Le Grys, Steve Cronshaw with journalist William Fotheringham and British Cycling President Brian Cookson also on the list of contenders. There will also be some superb special events, perhaps the best being the famous Muratti Cup to be held over the traditional distance from the Fallowfield Track days of 10 miles which converts in to 64 laps of the Manchester boards. This will be open to the best of the Masters taking part in the week but there will also be two special scratch race events for the men aged over 50 and over 60.
Advance tickets are now available at Reception at the National Cycling Centre and will also be available at the door during the championships. Ticket prices are very modest with all day prices at £8 and £5 for concessions during the week and £10 and £5 for concessions for the final two days. A weekly ticket for all seven days can also be obtained at £40 and £25 concession prices.
All ticket holders will also receive a free souvenir programme together with a daily update sheet containing full details of the programme for each day. The event web site will also carry live results and a daily picture round up allowing followers around the world to see the latest information. Full information about the championships along with a full schedule of events, entrants and world record times is now at www.cyclingmasters.com
The UCI has recently confirmed that the championships will stay at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester through to 2016 showing the confidence that the world governing body for cycling has in the organisation and the support of Manchester City Council.