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The Team sprint (also sometimes known as the Olympic sprint) is a track cycling event. Despite its name, it is not a conventional cycling sprint event - it is, in the men's event, a three-man team time trial held over three laps of a velodrome, and, in the women's event, a two-woman event held over two laps.
The current men's world record time is 42.600 seconds. This was set by the British team of Philip Hindes, Chris Hoy, and Jason Kenny in the Gold Medal Final of the Team Sprint event at the 2012 Olympic Games. The women's record of 32.422 seconds was set by the Chinese pair of Guo Shuang and Gong Jinjie, also at the 2012 Games.
It was first introduced into championship racing in 1996.
Like the team pursuit event, two teams race against each other, starting on opposite sides of the track. At the end of the first lap, the leading rider in each team pulls up the banking leaving the second rider to lead for the next lap; at the end of the second lap, the second rider does the same, leaving the third rider to complete the last lap on his own. The team with the fastest time is the winner.
The third rider needs good endurance qualities to maintain high speed to the finish. Kilometre track time trial specialists are usually chosen for this role.
Rules and Qualifying/Race Format
The qualifying round sees each team racing by themselves against the clock. The aim of the qualifying round is to simply set the fastest possible time out of all the teams. In the Olympic Games qualifying teams will then progress into a knockout round against another team, with the two eventual surviving teams competing for the Gold and Silver and the next two competing for the Bronze medal. In the World Championships and World Cup Classics meetings, the top two from the qualifying round progress straight to the final and the third and fourth quickest fight it out for the bronze medal.
- "Sir Chris Hoy leads GB to cycling gold in men's team sprint". BBC Sport. 2 August 2012. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
- "Cycling: China set women's team sprint world record". Reuters. 2 August 2012. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
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