Everything you need to Know

What is Cycle Speedway?

(Courtesy of British Cycling) - Cycle Speedway must be a contender for the title of most intense cycle sport on the planet. Races are short - usually four laps of an outdoor 70-90 metre circuit, lasting around 35-40 seconds – and physical contact is both legal and often necessary. Four riders contest a race, usually in pairs from opposing clubs. Indeed, Cycle Speedway is essentially a club sport, with inter-club or inter-country matches far more common than individual championships. Each match normally consists of between sixteen and twenty races!
Cycle Speedway Bikes are as simple as BMX or Track bikes – there are no gears, brakes, brackets, quick-release fittings, etc. Frames are often converted from mountain-bikes. Clothing is pretty conservative – most riders cover themselves from the neck down to protect against falls - and, of course, a helmet must be worn. Contact is expected, so many riders wear additional protection such as knee, elbow and hip pads.

The Cycle Speedway Rider

Top riders are explosive sprinters – but they also have stamina to enable them to keep going through a long match. Skill levels are high with slick starting, cornering and passing techniques essential. Strength is also required during contact with other riders.

Facts about the Explosive Sport

  • Cycle Speedway traces its origins back to the early post war years when motorcycle speedway was also enjoying a boom.

  • Post-war bombsites, which scarred many of our cities, proved perfect venues for the sport.

  • England’s Dave Helmsley is the sport’s biggest Star – he is reigning World, European and British champion, he has won the latter title a record five times. 

  • The sport’s biggest contest is the Ashes series against the “old enemy” Australia.