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Guide to Track Cycling

With access to the local velodrome at Derby Arena we have a world-class indoor track racing facility nearby. In addition to youth velodrome coaching which you can find out more about here, we have a number of adult riders taking part in the various track leagues and training sessions held at Derby Arena.

To get started on the track Derby Arena Thave a section of their website dedicated to tell all you need to know about starting track cycling at Derby Arena here:

If you would like to know more about racing in the Youth Track League, please speak to our club coach Martin Holmes who will be pleased to help. If you have a rider aged 9+ we have access to the Youth Track Cluster sessions at Derby Arena, you can find out more here

Here are the first steps to getting on the track:

Step 1: Gain Accreditation - 4 stage process arranged through Derby Arena. Bikes can be hired from the arena. 

Step 2: Gain Minimum of 10 Hours SQT Experience - Structured Quality Training sessions are 2 hours each, can be arranged through the arena with hire bikes available. 

Step 3: Get sign off from the SQT coaches - You can only race the league once the SQT coaches give approval that you are competent on the track. Talk to the coaches about what more you need to do to get their approval. 

Step 4: British Cycling Licence - You have to have at least Silver membership with British Cycling. This ensures you have the appropriate insurance to ride and gives many other benefits. 

Step 5: Join The League - Yearly membership of the league costs £20

Step 6: You’re Ready to Race - There are two leagues per year, Autumn and Spring, each 10 weeks long. Further details below. At this point you will probably want to consider investing in a track bike of your own if haven’t done already. 


The Arena runs many regular training and coaching sessions to improve your skills without the need to race which you can choose to do!  (See bottom of page)

Once you are ready to race, below is the information from Derby Arena regarding racing in the leagues.....

The track League year is 12 months commencing in January. The league registration covers the whole year.


Spring: There are normally 10 race nights between mid January and end of March, depending a little of what bookings are available at the Arena.

Autumn: The 10 race nights in the autumn are normally between early September and mid November. The last evening will incorporate the annual presentation of awards. (The Derby Pantomime is also staged in the Arena and we cannot race when the curtains are down).

Summer: There are usually four summer race evenings but these do not count for the league.

4 groups each night: 1, 2, 3, 4.
4 races per group
Selection of races each night from scratch, points, elimination, unknown distance, 6 lap dash, course de primes, tempo, win & out and the occasional 'special'
Racing to start 19:00 through to 22:00
Warm up on track from 18:30
Sign on from 17:45 to 18:40


All groups are open to junior and older, male and female riders


Group 1 riders – accredited and very experienced track riders that have raced in other indoor or outdoor track leagues and track competitions e.g. national Omnium series, sprinters’ league etc. Standard - fast. The top 8 riders in the group are guaranteed a place if they enter on line.

Group 2 riders – accredited track riders who have some experience of track racing and or a minimum of 20 hours track time (via SQTs or private or club training sessions). Standard - fairly fast. The top 8 riders in the group are guaranteed a place if they enter on line.

Group 3 riders – accredited riders who have some experience of track racing but have completed a minimum of 10 hours track time (via SQTs or private or club training sessions) in the last 12 months. Standard medium to fast. The top 12 riders in the group are guaranteed a place if they enter on line.

Group 4 riders - accredited riders who have no or limited experience of track racing but have completed a minimum of 10 hours track time in the last 12 months (via SQTs or private or club training sessions). Standard - medium. May suit older or less fit riders. 10 places will be reserved for women if there are sufficient entries. The top 12 riders in the group are guaranteed a place if they enter on line

Riders will be moved up and down between groups 3 and 4 to give two evenly sized groups of similar ability and will depend on who enters

You will specify your preferred group when you register for the league. Derby Arena Track League reserves the right to allocate you to another group, based on your experience and/or performance, either when you or register and/or on a track league night.

• Riders must hold a completed UK Indoor Track Accreditation to ride in the league and are required to have written proof of this either on their BC licence or via other means.
• In addition, for your own and the safety of others, novice riders must have completed a minimum of 10 hours track-time (via SQTs or private or club training sessions) to be considered eligible for racing.
• Riders must have Gold or Silver BC (race) membership. Provisional licence-holders are required to purchase a day-licence at sign-on.
• Riders must be aged 16+.
• Riders must sign on and hand in their licence each week they compete.
• We reserve the right to move riders up or down groups so that they are riding in the group appropriate to their ability

Riders must
• Register to ride the Derby Arena Track League. This is an annual registration, like a club membership, which will run from January to December each year and costs £20. Registration is only open to riders aged 16+.
• Register for the league on the British Cycling website, events page.
• Derby Arena Track League reserves the right to refuse your registration if a rider's experience is considered to be insufficient. The safety of ALL riders is a priority.
• Enter online, via the BC website, each league night you want to race. Submit your entry by 23:55 hrs on the Friday before the Tuesday race night. You may not be able to enter after this time.
• Cost of online entry is £12 per week. Late entries up to Monday noon - £16. Entry on the night £20
• You will receive an email from BC confirming receipt of your entry application. At this stage you are not actually entered.
• To be entered your application has to be accepted by the race organiser. This will be done on a first come first served basis until the Group is full, on the Saturday before the Tuesday evening. Once your application is accepted, you will receive a 2nd email from BC confirming acceptance of your entry. This will be sent out either Sunday or Monday before race night. You are now ENTERED. If you have not received this 2nd acceptance email, please do not turn up as you will not be able to ride. As a second check that you have entered, go to the BC entry page for that night and click on the list of entrants for that Group. If you name is there, you are OK to race.


• We require a minimum of 48 hours’ notice if, after you have entered, you find you can no longer make it. This will allow your place to be offered to another registered rider.

• Derby Arena Track League reserves the right to refuse entry on the grounds of failure to meet the conditions of entry, or breach of the code of conduct.

By formally registering for the Derby Arena Track League and paying the necessary registration fees, you agree to adhere to the following code of conduct throughout the series.
1. The track league is an individual event. No team work, combines, composites or collaborations of any kind will be tolerated.
2. Riders are required to compete in their registered club/team kit (if applicable). National and World title jerseys may only be worn in the event and relevant age category in which they were awarded.
3. Race numbers should be fixed, unfolded, across the lower half of your back, angled with the top edge parallel to the spine, so they can be seen by officials positioned on both sides of the track. An example will be displayed at the sign-on desk prior to racing. Riders must present to the start line with numbers correctly fixed and positioned or they will not be permitted to start.
4. All riders are responsible for the conduct of their helpers at all times whilst on Derby Arena property.
5. Riders eliminated from a race must leave the track as soon as it is safe to do so.
6. It is forbidden for riders to ride on the Cote d’Azur (blue band) during a race to gain an advantage.
7. After crossing the finish line at the end of a race, all riders MUST HOLD THEIR LINE and avoid deviating up or down.
8. Riders must keep their hands on the bars during a race and after crossing the finish line.
9. Riders may be penalised (by losing points, relegation, disqualification, fine, suspension or expulsion) for any breach of the code of conduct or of the following safety rules:
• providing the organisers with false information relating to their track racing experience and/or level of expertise
• obstruction, impediment or blocking of another rider, by any means
• passing (or attempting to pass) inside the sprinters’ line when the preceding rider is on, or inside, that line
• shutting down or taking another riders line without having a clear bike-length lead when overtaking
• passing riders on the inside (unless the rider being passed is riding wide)
• deliberate obstruction, cutting, pushing or tactical movements likely to falsify the end result of a race
• verbal intimidation or abuse directed at anyone inside the Arena, including riders, officials, spectators and staff.

Rules for sprints:
• Finish of Scratch races
• Intermediate and final sprints of Points races
• Sprints in Win & Out
• Sprints in Tempo race
• Elimination laps in the devil
Once a sprint has started or in the last 200m, whichever is earlier, a rider must hold their line and must not move around the track with the aim of hindering an opponent.
If you are in the sprinter's lane (between black and red lines) you may not come out of the lane if it would hinder an opponent. If the sprinters lane is already occupied you may not come down into it unless you are a bike length clear.
Riders infringing these may be relegated where there moves are considered to have affected the result of the race.

10. The league will operate a 3 strikes and out policy. If a rider receives three verbal warnings from a commissaire in the course of the league, they will not be permitted to ride the remaining league sessions.
11. In the event of disciplinary action being taken, there will be no refunds made of Registration or Entry Fees.
12. All racing will be conducted in accordance with British Cycling rules and officiated by British Cycling Commissaires
13. The organisers reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone contravening these rules.

Sorry after helping carry your kit to the D, helpers will not be allowed to remain track centre as space is limited. Riders need to be self-suffient. Helpers can watch racing from the stands.

Spectators are always welcome to watch from the stands. Derby Arena charges a fee of £1 for adults and 50p for children. Pay the fee at reception.

Aside from the racing, our league nights provide an opportunity for people who want to be involved in track racing in a support role to gain Velodrome experience as a commissaire or event volunteer. If you would like to help out, please contact our volunteer lead.

The results of each evening’s racing will be available to view on Riders’ Facebook page (see below) and the league website as soon as possible after the Tuesday evening.
The league competition will run as follows:
There will be a winner for each group A, B, C and an overall league winner.
Points towards the league competition will be awarded to the first 8 finishers in each race on the following basis.

2 Facebook pages have been set up to keep in touch. If you use Facebook, like our Facebook page Derby Arena Track League. We will use this to post updates, any changes to arrangements, photos etc. The link for this page is
A closed group has also been set up for registered league riders. A chance for you to have some Good-humoured banter with fellow riders and provide us with feedback.

The link for the closed group is


Once you have gained your accreditation there are a number of sessions available for you to develop your skills:


Session Name

Derny Session

These sessions are great for those looking to improve leg speed, strength and power at race speeds. There is a level of skill required so we recommend this sessions to riders who have attended 10 or more SQT sessions and are able to ride competently.

Higher gearing can be used, we recommend upwards of 92”

Alternate Thursdays at 8:00pm till 10:00pm

Drop In Sessions

Drop in sessions are designed for accredited riders who wish to get some track time allowing them to train, practice different gearing, discipline specific efforts like pursuit and sprint.

Thursdays at 7:00am till 8:00am
Thursdays at 8:00am till 9:00am

Performance Sessions

Sprint & Pursuit

This is an SQT session for riders who compete in either the sprint or pursuit disciplines at a regional, national or international level. It is recommended that riders have a plan of specific efforts prior to booking this session. Pursuit bars are allowed for the pursuit blocks on track.

Wednesdays at 2:00pm till 4:00pm

Wednesdays at 4:00pm till 6:00pm

Pursuit Session

These sessions are for riders who compete in Pursuit disciplines at Regional, National or International level. It is recommended that riders have a plan of specific efforts prior to booking this session. Pursuit bars are allowed for the pursuit blocks on track.

Thursdays at 9:00am till 10:00am

Race SQT

This Structured Quality Training (SQT) session is designed for both experienced riders who have attended multiple SQT sessions previously and who race in the leagues, as well as for newly accredited riders or those who are looking at developing their racing skills. Please let the coach know if you are new to SQT sessions.

Saturdays at 7:00am till 8:30am

Structured Quality Training (SQT) Sessions

Designed for those who are wishing to both develop their skills and fitness.

Mondays at 6:00pm till 8:00pm
Fridays at 6:00pm till 8:00pm
Sundays at 7:00pm till 9:00pm

Super VETS

Designed for those aged 60 and over and have completed at least one Stage 1 and completed the session. The sessions are for those that want regular exercise without emphasis on racing as such.

Mondays at 10:00am till 2:00pm

Fridays at 10:00am till 11:30am


Veterans SQT

Designed for those aged 40 and over. A great way to develop both fitness and skills for various types of racing.

 Tuesdays at 11:00am  till 1:00pm

Thursdays at 10:00am till 12:00pm

Women’s only

#This girl can

We are passionate about women’s only cycling at Derby Arena. We have a number of sessions dedicated to helping riders develop in an environment they feel comfortable in. For Stage 2 and above riders.

Alternate Mondays at 8:00pm till 10:00pm

*please be aware that booking in advance is highly recommended and the 28 day booking policy still applies.


Structured Quality Training (SQT)

Structured Quality Training Sessions are for more experienced track cyclist or newly accredited riders looking to further improve their race skills and knowledge. These sessions will cover the basics of the sprinting and endurance events and improve rider skills. They will also test your fitness and prepare you for various types of racing. SQT sessions are delivered by a qualified coach and offer more formal and race-centred opportunities. 


Endurance Riders:

If you are looking to develop your endurance skills and fitness then any Structured Quality Training (SQT) session is suitable. The sessions include drills and race scenario's to help develop your riding ability and track skills, including knowledge of track races, technical and tactical skills and an element of physical preparation for racing.


Sprint Riders:

If you are a sprinter or fancy learning the art then the Sprint school on alternate Sunday's is a great place to start. The session covers all things track sprint from warm-ups, gearing, flying and rolling efforts and gate starts.

If you are looking to complete your own efforts as a sprinter then we have 5 spaces available on every SQT to allow you the track time in between the endurance blocks.


Drop In Sessions

These sessions are for those looking at gaining some track time in an unstructured session. The nature of the session allows riders to complete efforts, try new gears and spend time on the track with coach supervision.


Derny Paced SQT

Derny sessions are great for those looking to improve leg speed, strength and power. The session is suitable for experienced riders and is fast-paced.

Gearing recommendations are 92"+.


Discipline Specific SQTs

For those looking to practice sprint or pursuit efforts, we have a number of sessions to cater for this. The sessions have a lower number of spaces to ensure enough time for efforts. This typically looks like 10 minutes for sprint and 20 for pursuit efforts rotating over a 2-hour session, a typical number of efforts for riders is 4 sets.


To check the availability of sessions and to book please visit the Derby Arena track cycling program:


More information can be found at:

How to book?


Bookings can be made either in person, by phone or you can register to book by following the link below:


Now that you are riding regularly our range of Derby Active Leisure cards offer great discounts on sport & leisure activities at Derby Arena and at other Derby City Council leisure facilities. For more information please speak to a member of our team or you can apply online:


For Bookings and if you have any further questions or require further information please do not hesitate to get in touch by calling 01332 640011 or by emailing or visit Derby Arena.

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