For the third consecutive year, Mallorca hosts the premiere of the UCI Track Champions League, the most spectacular and exciting track cycling competition held in the world, and for which riders from 28 nations have been summoned, four of them from America: Canada, United States, Mexico and Colombia.

This Saturday, October 21, starting at 5:30 p.m., the Illes Balears velodrome, in Palma, will once again see the best runners on the planet in action in this spectacular cycling specialty, in an event organized by Warner Bros-Discovery Sports Europe.

The public that comes to the velodrome will not only enjoy a top-level sporting spectacle, but will also see a great setup, with light and music shows during breaks in the competition, all designed to entertain and transport those present to an unknown dimension of this sport.

It will be the third time that this facility hosts the first round of this spectacular competition. In 2021, the star was Corbin Strong, while in 2022 big names triumphed, such as the Dutch Harrie Lavreysen, a legend of men’s track cycling, or the British Katie Archibald and the French Mathilde Gros.

In this edition, 72 runners (36 men and 36 women) will compete during five rounds to see who are the best in each category, with Olympic, world and European champions from the five continents.

Among the list of 36 runners who will compete in the Endurance category, the current Olympic champion and four-time UCI world champion Matthijs Büchli (Netherlands), William Tidball (Great Britain), Theo Reinhardt (Germany), Quentin Lafarge (France) stand out. .

For the girls, the strong field includes UCI Olympic and World Champion Katie Archibald (Great Britain) and fellow rainbow jersey holder Neah Evans (Great Britain).

As for the Sprint modality, with the fastest on the planet, the powerful list of 18 runners includes the 2023 European champion Tijmen van Loon (Netherlands) and former European gold medalists Mateus Rudyk (Poland) and Melvin Landerneau (France ).

As if that were not enough, two-time Olympic champion and 13-time UCI world champion Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands), fellow rainbow jersey holder Kevin Quintero (Colombia) and defending UCI Men’s Sprint Champion Track are also registered. Champions League Matthew Richardson (Australia).

Among the ladies, the presence of the current Olympic champion Kelsey Mitchell (Canada), the also Olympic medalists Lauriane Genest (France) and Katy Marchant (Great Britain) and the current European champion Alessa-Catriona Pröpster (Germany), in addition to the recently crowned UCI world champions Emma Finucane (Great Britain) and Ellesse Andrews (New Zealand).

Florian Pavia, director of the UCI Track Champions League, acknowledged that the Illes Balears velodrome “has been a perfect host in the two previous campaigns and that is why we trust Palma for the opening round” while David Lappartient, president of the UCI, stated that The UCI Track Champions League “will once again have a prestigious start in 2023, with the first round in Mallorca.”

The UCI Track Champions League follows a league format, with riders earning points in the Sprint or Endurance category over five rounds. In each category, there are two types of races in which competitors can accumulate points: sprinters will compete in Sprint and Keirin races, while endurance racers will compete in Elimination and Scratch modes.

Sprint races:

Sprint: In the Sprint race, the first runner to cross the finish line after three laps of the track wins. The first round will comprise six three-rider head-to-head heats, with the six winners advancing to the semi-finals. Then, two heats of three riders will determine the final two competitors seeking victory.

Keirin: The Keirin race is a massive five-lap sprint start. The first two laps of the track will be done behind a Derny motorcycle to set the pace, leaving the riders alone until the finish line for the remaining three. Six cyclists will participate in three heats, and the best two will qualify for the final. In the final, six riders will compete for victory.

The Endurance modality races:

Elimination: In the Elimination race, the last runner to cross the finish line in every two laps will be eliminated from the race. The first lap will be neutral and all 18 runners will participate from the beginning.

Scratch: The classic Scratch race will be contested over a relatively short 5km distance to see the high-speed action from the start. The 18 participating cyclists will compete for a position on the podium over 20 laps of the 250m track.