Analysis of the different racing strategies and tactics used in elite level omnium points races
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Research into track cycling is fairly limited and even more so in the performance analysis discipline. The purpose of this study was to quantitatively analyse the points race and research if there was any significant changes to racing strategy in relation to the 2014 format and rule changes of the omnium. Performance indicators were grouped into four categories: Attack, breakaway, failed breakaway and gaining a lap. Six elite-level female points races were analysed (n=3 old rule, n=3 new rule) from the European Championships, World Cups and World Championships equally. Mann-Whitney U tests were used when comparing old to new rules and Kruskal-Wallis H tests were used when comparing 3 independent samples (top 3, middle 3, bottom 3 overall finishing positions). The study found statistical significance from breakaway analysis comparing old (total 85, mean 28 ± 9, p<0.05) to new (total 167, mean 56 ± 12, p<0.05) rules. Failed breakaways were also found to be statistically significant when comparing old (total 73, mean 24 ± 9, p=0.05) to new (total 161, mean 54 ± 11, p=0.05) rules. The results from this study show changes to racing format and rules have modified racing strategies and could effect athletes and coaches tactical decision making for future events.