Bicycles were invented in the mid-18th century and have been a popular form of transportation ever since. In 1885 cycling took a big step forward when J. K. Starley came up with the idea of a chain and gear system. Since then, engineers have developed their techniques to build faster, sleeker, and lighter bikes.
The first road race in Olympic history was held in 1896, where bikers followed the marathon route of the first Games of the modern era. The race started in the Greek capital, headed towards Marathon and then returned to the Faliro velodrome in Athens.
The women's Olympic competition was added to the programme at Los Angeles 1984, with an individual road race. Then, in 1996, the individual time trial was included in the women's Olympic cycling, just like the men's.
Road cycling has been part of the Pan American Games since its first edition at Buenos Aires 1951. The medal table is led by the United States, with 13 golds including men’s and women’s.
Riders need to develop specific motor skills, as well as logical skills based on the mechanisms of perception, decision and execution. They stand out for their efficiency and ability to adapt and solve specific problems in a race, through tactics and strategy.
Road race is among the most demanding categories due to sunstroke, dehydration, accidents and injuries to which athletes are exposed. Sometimes, the cyclists continue in competition without the option of being replaced or that the group stops to wait for the injured to return to the route.
These athletes often ride for eight hours, sometimes with rain, snow or high temperatures. The three great tours in the world (Giro d'Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta de España) consist of 21 days of competition, where the winner is whoever records the shortest time after the stages are over, and after traveling nearly 3,500 km.
Road cycling has several types of tests, and at Santiago 2023 there will be the individual road race and individual time trial for men and women.
In the individual road race, cyclists start together and have to cover a route that can be flat, with many curves and/or steep inclines, very violent descents or very windy areas. Whoever crosses the finish line first wins the competition.
In the individual time trial competition, cyclists start separately at regular intervals of one or two minutes. The competitor who completes the circuit in the shortest time wins.
Cycling competitions take place regularly in Chile. There are different categories which are divided by age from 11 years old. Men and women practice this sport, and some of the best representatives are Paola Muñoz and Gonzalo Garrido, who won gold medals in the individual road race at the 2014 Santiago South American Games. For more information, you can contact the National Cycling Sports Federation of Chile at www.fdnciclismochile.clGo back to sports