Twenty world champions from a record 44 nations will descend on Cambridge next week for the TISSOT UCI Track Cycling World Cup.
There will be more than 500 riders and staff and a total of 54 teams competing in the fourth of six world cup competitions that will provide the final qualifying process towards the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
USA, Switzerland and Ukraine have already arrived and began training at the Avantidrome today with the bulk arriving next week with the competition on Friday 6 to Sunday 8 December.
“This is shaping not only as the biggest event that we have hosted here at the Avantidrome, but arguably the hottest competition in a very important phase for countries towards their Olympic qualification,” said Cycling New Zealand CEO, Jacques Landry.
“The last World Cup here produced some fantastic racing but this is expected to ramp up even more next week. There are some extraordinary riders here and in good form with a lot riding on these results.
“Our organising team are in the process of transforming the Avantidrome from a world-class high-performance training facility to a world class competition venue.”
The endurance competition is headed by Australia with both of their rainbow jersey male and female combinations competing in Cambridge and includes current individual world champions Ashlee Ankudinoff (individual pursuit), Alexandra Manly (points race) and Sam Welsford (scratch race).
The Vantage New Zealand team is headed by omnium world champion Campbell Stewart, who will face stern competition in what promises to be a bristling men’s omnium including Madison world champion Roger Kluge (Germany), nine-time world champion Cameron Meyer (Australia) and two-time European champion Liam Bertazzo (Italy).
Current sprint and keirin world champion Lee Wai Sze will be the rider to watch in the women’s sprint along with Australia’s world team sprint champion Stephanie Morton.
The New Zealand trio of Ethan Mitchell, Sam Webster and Eddie Dawkins will chase glory in the team sprint as well as face stiff competition in the individual events from the likes of 2017 world sprint champion Denis Dmitriev (Russia) and 2018 world champion Matthew Glaetzer (Australia), remarkably expected to confirm his entry despite recent cancer surgery.
Ticket prices for the event range from $30 for adults and $15 for children and all-sessions for three days from $189 for adults and $108 for children, available through ticketek.co.nz.