The Great Britain Cycling Team track squads have now returned home to their Manchester training base at the National Cycling Centre, following seven months at the Derby Arena.
Following impressive back-to-back world championships for the Olympic and Paralympic track squads in Paris, riders will kickstart their winter training in the newly upgraded velodrome.
In total, £26 million will be spent on the project to replace the facility’s mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems and improve spectator areas, supported by Manchester City Council.
In addition to the work in the velodrome, a new wind tunnel at the Manchester Institute of Health and Performance (MIHP) has been gifted to British Cycling from Halfords, and with the support of UK Sport and Manchester City Council, the tunnel has been rebuilt and upgraded to support riders as they build towards Paris 2024, LA 2028 and beyond.
Since the closure, Neah Evans, Ethan Hayter, and the men’s team pursuit squad achieved track world titles in France, before the Great Britain Para-Cycling Team had their most successful world championships on the track, winning 28 medals and 20 world titles.
A home Commonwealth Games saw titles claimed across the home nations, including from Laura Kenny for England, Neil Fachie for Scotland, and James Ball for Wales. These successes are in no small part down to the amazing support from Derby Arena and the University of Derby who provided a home for the track squad, allowing them to continue to train in a high-quality facility in the lead up to multiple major events.
Great Britain Cycling Team Performance Director, Stephen Park CBE, said: “The National Cycling Centre has been the home of the Great Britain Cycling Team since it first opened in 1994 so it’s great to return to our home base after seven months away. That being said, both staff and riders came together this year to ensure a seamless transition and they reaped the rewards, ending the season with an incredible 26 world titles across the road, track, junior track and para-track world championships.
“The upgrades to the National Cycling Centre, as well as the addition of the wind tunnel facility, are key parts of our high-performance strategy, helping us to cement our medal-winning potential as we move closer to Paris 2024. I also want to say a huge thank you to the team at Derby Arena in being so accommodating over the last seven months and providing the squad the ability to train as usual – your support has been vital in the continued development of our riders.”
Neah Evans, women’s endurance rider and points race world champion, said: “Being back in Manchester is fantastic, it really is home to us. Derby was a great facility; we were well looked after and very lucky to be able to continue our training which has led to some fantastic results this season. But Manchester is our home and it’s great to be back here as a team as we head into winter training and can build on this year’s performances as we get closer to Paris 2024!”
Since early 2022, while the uplift has been ongoing, the Great Britain Cycling Team were able to relocate to Derby Arena, where they were able to train to achieve medals at world, Commonwealth, and European level.
Manchester’s Track League will be starting up again from January, however the British National Track Championships at the end of the month will once again be hosted in Newport. Tickets are now available for the British National Track Championships, and more details can be found here.