Cycling Track at the 2008 Summer Olympics

Dates 15 – 19 August 2008
Medal Events 10

In 2008, cycling added a fourth discipline to its Olympic Program with BMX racing for men and women. To make room for the extra events, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) felt compelled to drop some track events so the popular men’s kilometre time trial and the women’s 500 metre time trial lost out. The men’s kilometre time trial had been an Olympic event since 1928, and there were some initial protests from cyclists, but at Beijing there was little mention of its Olympic demise. The track events were held at the Laoshan Velodrome, an indoor facility with a 250-metre wooden-surface track with 45° banked curves and 13° banked straights.

The story of the 2008 Olympic cycling was the performance of Great Britain’s cycling team. Led by Chris Hoy, who won three gold medals in the sprint, keirin, and team sprint, the nation won seven track cycling gold medals. This was the result of a concentrated effort by the British cycling federation, which nationalized the cycling program, and had also resulted in many medals at the Worlds and other international events.

Bradley Wiggins defended his title in the individual pursuit, and led Britain to the team pursuit gold. He would finish his Olympic career in 2016 with eight medals and five gold medals, adding golds in the 2012 road time trial and the 2016 team pursuit. Argentina’s Juan Esteban Curuchet won his first Olympic medal, a gold in the Madison, in his sixth Olympic appearance, the first man to ride in six Olympic Games.

Rebecca Romero won gold in the individual pursuit for Britain, which was a shift from her previous Olympic appearance, when she won a silver medal in quadruple sculls rowing at the 2004 Olympics. Britain’s Vicki Pendleton won the women’s sprint. She would return to take silver in the event in 2012 and win the keirin in London. Beijing was the first Olympic appearance for the Netherlands’ Marianne Vos, considered by many as the greatest women’s cyclist ever. She won the points race on the track, and also competed in the road race, finishing sixth, but she would return in London and add a gold in the road race.

Events

Event Status Date Participants NOCs
Sprint, Men Olympic 17 – 19 August 2008 21 15
Keirin, Men Olympic 16 – 16 August 2008 25 16
Team Sprint, Men Olympic 15 – 15 August 2008 41 13
Individual Pursuit, 4000 metres, Men Olympic 15 – 16 August 2008 18 12
Team Pursuit, 4,000 metres, Men Olympic 17 – 18 August 2008 44 10
Points Race, Men Olympic 16 – 16 August 2008 23 23
Madison, Men Olympic 19 – 19 August 2008 32 16
Sprint, Women Olympic 17 – 19 August 2008 12 11
Individual Pursuit, 4000 metres, Women Olympic 15 – 17 August 2008 13 11
Points Race, Women Olympic 18 – 18 August 2008 22 22
176 (137/39) 36 (32/24)

Medals

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Sprint, Men Chris HoyGBR Jason KennyGBR Mickaël BourgainFRA
Keirin, Men Chris HoyGBR Ross EdgarGBR Kiyofumi NagaiJPN
Team Sprint, Men Great BritainGBR FranceFRA GermanyGER
Individual Pursuit, 4,000 metres, Men Bradley WigginsGBR Hayden RoulstonNZL Steven BurkeGBR
Team Pursuit, 4,000 metres, Men Great BritainGBR DenmarkDEN New ZealandNZL
Points Race, Men Joan LlanerasESP Roger KlugeGER Chris NewtonGBR
Madison, Men ArgentinaARG SpainESP Russian FederationRUS
Sprint, Women Vicki PendletonGBR Anna MearesAUS Guo ShuangCHN
Individual Pursuit, 3,000 metres, Women Rebecca RomeroGBR Wendy HouvenaghelGBR Lesia KalytovskaUKR
Points Race, Women Marianne VosNED Yoanka GonzálezCUB Leire OlaberríaESP

Medal table

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Total
Great Britain GBR 7 3 2 12
Spain ESP 1 1 1 3
Argentina ARG 1 0 0 1
Netherlands NED 1 0 0 1
France FRA 0 1 1 2
Germany GER 0 1 1 2
New Zealand NZL 0 1 1 2
Australia AUS 0 1 0 1
Cuba CUB 0 1 0 1
Denmark DEN 0 1 0 1
Japan JPN 0 0 1 1
People's Republic of China CHN 0 0 1 1
Russian Federation RUS 0 0 1 1
Ukraine UKR 0 0 1 1