Chance to see stars before major championships

Sir Chris Hoy and Victoria Pendleton are among the big names lining up for the British National Track Championships taking place in Manchester from September 21 to 25.

The first major meeting of the new season gives fans an opportunity to watch many of Britain’s best track cyclists in action before both the Commonwealth Games in Delhi and the European Track Championships in Poland.

Sir Chris Hoy, who won his first National title back in 1995, will be competing in the Sprint, Keirin and Team Sprint, having become National champion in the individual events for the first time in his career last year. The 34-year-old will face competition from the likes of Jason Kenny, Ross Edgar, Matt Crampton and Dave Daniell.

Victoria Pendleton will take to the boards in the Women’s Sprint, Keirin and Time Trial and she in turn will be up against young pretenders Jess Varnish and two times Junior World Champion Becky James.

The Team Sky quartet of Ian Stannard, Peter Kennaugh, Ben Swift and 2010 National Road Race Champion, Geraint Thomas, will all take part in the Men’s Scratch, Points and Individual Pursuit races while 2009 Team Pursuit World Champions Joanna Rowsell and Wendy Houvenaghel will go head-to-head in what should be a fascinating Women’s Individual Pursuit race.

British Cycling’s Cycle Sport and Membership Director, Jonny Clay said: “This year’s event at Manchester, the home of British cycling, is a great chance for anyone to come and watch not only some of the top riders in the country, but also in the world. Track Cycling is a tremendous spectacle whether you are a cycling enthusiast or coming to a Velodrome for the first time and the National Track Championships won’t leave you disappointed.”

Sir Chris Hoy said: "The National Track Championships has always been important event and this year is certainly no different as it is the curtain raiser to the new track season. It's a unique event with the best riders in the country taking part and it's often a stepping stone towards qualification for international representation. The racing will be fast and exciting and it should be a fantastic event.”