Glasgow 2014: Cheat sheet for Commonwealth Games cycling


The sport in brief

Mountain bike: There is a men's and women's event - it's a straightforward race with riders doing their best to negotiate the twists, turns and rocky terrain of a challenging course. It's a balancing act between keeping upright and keeping up speed as first across the line wins gold.

Road cycling: There are two events. The road race is a mass start in which a team of six riders per nation race over a 168km (men) or 98km (women) course. The time trial is a race against the clock in which the fastest time wins. Riders start at one-minute intervals; men ride a 40km course and the women's race is 30km.

Track cycling: There are eight events for men, and five for women, along with four para-sport contests. All the races - some of which are sprints, others a test of endurance - take place on an indoor oval velodrome track, named after six-time Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy.

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Home Nations' prospects

England's Sir Bradley Wiggins is aiming to win his first Commonwealth gold medal on the track. Scotland's reigning champion David Millar and England's Olympic silver medallist Lizzie Armitstead will be looking for gold on the roads.

England's golden couple Jason Kenny and Laura Trott will be hard to beat on the track. Also in the velodrome, Northern Ireland's Martyn Irvine, Elinor Barker of Wales and Scotland's double world champion Neil Fachie will be going for gold.

Commonwealth class acts

Australia's queen of sprint Anna Meares will surely add to her already extensive medal collection. New Zealand's Linda Villumsen has been consistently winning medals on the road for the past five years. Canadian mountain biker Catharine Pendrel will be aiming to erase her London 2012 heartache.

What's new for Glasgow 2014?

Para-cycling makes its Commonwealth Games debut with four events (the tandem time trial and sprint for blind and visually impaired riders). The track cycling women's team sprint has been dropped. Mountain bike returns to the schedule after being dropped for Delhi.

Pub bore

Track bikes have no brakes; riders stop by putting pressure on the pedals.

Best medal performance by the Home Nations

England: One gold medal in mountain bike (Liam Killeen, 2006); seven gold medals in road (most recently Paul Curran, road race, 1986 & team time trial, 1986); 18 gold medals in track (most recently Paul Manning, individual pursuit, 2006 & Victoria Pendleton, individual sprint, 2006).

Northern Ireland: One bronze medal in road (team time trial, 1986); one silver medal in track (Wendy Houvenaghel, individual pursuit, 2010).

Scotland: One gold medal in road (David Millar, individual time trial, 2010); two gold medals in track (most recently team sprint, 2006).

Wales: One gold medal in road (Nicole Cooke, road race, 2002); One gold medal in track (Louise Jones, match sprint, 1990).

Isle of Man: One gold medal in road (Peter Buckley, road race, 1966); One gold medal in track (Mark Cavendish, scratch race, 2006).