If it was a Pringle crisp it would have shattered into a million little cascades of potato flakes by now ... the Velodrome, nicknamed the Pringle, has been raising the roof at the Olympics – for all the right British reasons ... we’re happy we’ll accept the Pringle name for our Velodrome!
|Cedar cladding on outside of Velodrome|
I sometimes wonder why I start writing posts as I find out so much ‘useless’ information I am amazed at myself ... so here we go once again!
|That Pringle chip or crisp as we know them|
The back story can be found in Wikipedia – but the consistent saddle shape is mathematically known as a hyperbolic paraboloid .... and they were originally known as “Pringles Newfangled Potato Chips” ... there’s a saga here – so again refer to that instant information screen that is Wiki!
Chips or Crisps .... as long as they have some potato in them – and some flavourings of sorts ... some certainly strange to my taste ... our western mouths seem to gobble them up; each Pringle is a hyperbolic paraboloid – just like the London 2012 venue – except there’s only one Velodrome.
|London 2012 Olympic Velodrome|
The venue will be handed to the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority and form the heart of a new VeloPark for use by the local community, clubs and elite athletes. (The other elite 21st C Velodrome venue is in the north of England in Manchester).
|Forest City Velodrome|
in London, Ontario
Velodromes started life as an arena for track cycling, funnily enough, while the early ones could be included with other sporting facilities and always varied in shape and length.
|The Dunc Gray Velodrome in Sydney, Australia|
The Olympics brought about the standardisation of competitive arenas ... and international competitions are now held on velodromes with 250m laps.
Sir Chris Hoy – who has won six gold and one silver medal at the Olympic Games – has been a key adviser in the design of the London 2012 venue. The track is fast ... with many world and Olympic records having been broken.
The specifications are quite extraordinary ... the temperature is a controlled 82 deg F (28 deg C!) – as warmer air offers less resistance; the whole is in an airtight membrane – with air-locked double doors to get in ... you have to wait to get out.
There are no draughts ... nothing to disturb the cyclists – but it’s hot and a bit pongy ... the audience of 6,000 is also likely to be gently perspiring! The need for air conditioning was eliminated with the installation of a 100% naturally ventilated system.
|Glass viewing wall|
The seating has been split into two tiers – with the glass wall around the venue’s perimeter, between the two tiers of the venue seating, giving spectators a 360 degree view of the Olympic Park –a brilliant idea.
Wherever possible, the materials used in the venue’s construction were sustainably sourced, including the western red cedar used to clad the Pringle’s exterior. While Siberian pine used for the track floor ... grows very slowly and is not likely to splinter.
The track construction took 26 carpenters eight weeks to install the Siberian pine race track using 300,000 nails to hold it in place.
|A hyperbolic paraboloid|
The Velodrome designers worked closely with the track designers to tailor the track geometry, temperature and environmental conditions with the aim of creating a record-breaking track – they seem to have done that.
|All this talk of Pringles has made me hungry ... and I see I|
pressed the publish button early ... instead of insert image
... must have other things on my mind!
So this loudest, hottest and most electric of venues has created the ultimate sporting environment – that is the Pringle of east London.
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