LA velodrome too tight for Hour?
Saturday, March 26, 2005 12.00am
World hour record holder Chris Boardman thinks the LA world track champs track does not suit pursuit
Great for sprinting, but not so great for pursuiting - and therefore not so great for an hour record attempt. That's been the athlete's verdict on the quality of the ADT Event Center velodrome in Carson - despite Lance Armstrong's recent incognito appearance on the velodrome's Siberian Pine boards, apparently for Hour record testing. According to AEG sources, Armstrong recently rode on the velodrome, prior to his return to Europe for the road racing season. The Tour de France champion also spent time testing equipment in a wind tunnel in San Diego, investigating the possibilities for an attempt on Chris Boardman's Hour record during the Discovery Channel team's January training camp in Solvaing, California. But current record holder Boardman, working with Team GB at the world championships currently taking place in Los Angeles, ruled out the possibility of an Armstrong attempt on the Carson track. "It's too steep and too tight - good for sprinting but not good for endurance," said Boardman. "That increases the G-forces, as the pursuiters have found, which makes if very uncomfortable. It's not for distance racing. "It's just the shape of the track really - and it's not that warm. You'd want it to be warmer than this, about 26 degrees." Despite the temptations of a record attempt in the 'city of angels', Armstrong seems unlikely, for the time being, to use the Carson velodrome for anything more than testing. Boardman would still like to see any record attempt made on the same track on which the record was set - which would be Manchester. "It's a good track," the former Tour de France 'maillot jaune' said. "But as long as it's below 500 metres altitude, I don't really care. Having said that, if Lance is riding the Tour this year, I think he'll wait until 2006 to make an attempt." Boardman's suggestions for stricter regulatory controls, both of equipment and dope testing for any future attempt on his Hour record, were voiced recently in an open letter to the UCI. "I got an email back from Hein Verbruggen," Boardman revealed. "He said that I shouldn't have asked for controls to be put in place when they weren't there for me and that it showed I believed the rumours that were going around that were completely unfounded." "I replied to him and said: 'Hein - you've got me wrong - I think Lance is completely clean, but what a fantastic way to prove it to everyone and to shut these people up, once and for all.'"
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