72 riders set to compete across five rounds in four countries
Season 3 of the UCI Track Champions League will begin earlier than previous editions to account for August’s UCI Cycling World Championships, bringing nearly all of the UCI’s disciplines together in one 11-day event.
The schedule for the 2023 UCI Track Champions League has been announced today, as part of the Warner Bros Discovery Sports ‘Start of Season Cycling Launch’.
The high-intensity and demanding track cycling competition heads into its third season, which will take place earlier this year, and will see the likes of Mathilde Gros (FRA), Katie Archibald (GBR) and Matthew Richardson (AUS) return to the boards in October as part of the 36 male and 36 female contingent of riders who will compete in four key locations across five rounds in the hope of claiming the coveted blue leaders’ jerseys.
UCI Track Champions League Series Director, Florian Pavia said: “Several factors had to be considered before taking the decision to reposition the UCI Track Champions League season to earlier in the year. We now align with the global calendar of the UCI, our key stakeholder. This year differs from the two previous years, with the UCI Cycling World Championships taking place in August and featuring nearly all cycling disciplines, whereas usually the UCI Track Cycling Championships take place in October. We also wanted to avoid any clashes with many of the road cycling training camps, aiming to facilitate the participation of the very best Endurance riders whose season’s plans are usually built around their road cycling teams’ schedules.”
The final 72 riders that will take part in the third season of the UCI Track Champions League will be confirmed later this year, with the four defending champions automatically qualifying for a place in the line-up. Participation of new athletes is dependent on their performance at the UCI Cycling World Championships.
2022 UCI Track Champions League Women’s Sprint winner, Mathilde Gros said: “For me, a series with the intensity of the UCI Track Champions League is key for an athlete’s preparation for the 2024 Olympic year. It is a demanding level of competition while providing the opportunity for the riders to showcase themselves to new audiences through the television broadcasts. I’ve received a lot of messages from younger female riders saying they really want to try track cycling after seeing me win last season.”
Five-time Olympic Champion and UCI Track Champions League competitor Laura Kenny said: “I’ve seen the UCI Track Champions League from both sides – as an athlete, and as a broadcaster. Both sides bring something completely different – as an athlete, you get the really intense side, but as a broadcaster, you actually start to peel back the layers of the relationships between the riders, who is competitive with who, and who gets on with who on and off the track. It gives you a real insight into their personalities.”
2022 saw the series draw more than 18,000 spectators into the world-class velodromes in Mallorca (Spain), Berlin (Germany), Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (Paris, France) and London (Great Britain). Seventy-two of the world’s best track cyclists, who had amassed 60 UCI Track World Championships titles and 28 Olympic medals between them, competed for honours in the men’s and women’s sprint and endurance categories.
The UCI Track Champions League is available to watch live and on-demand, alongside post-race highlights via the Warner Bros Discovery platforms, including discovery+ (in selected markets), Eurosport and the Eurosport App.
The full racing calendar for 2023, including dates and locations of each round, will be announced soon.