Planning Our Visit to the Salad Bowl of Death



I first referred to it as a salad bowl. It feels like you’re riding around on the inside of a wooden salad bowl.

My friend David added “of Death.” He did Track 1, Intro to Track, with me a few years ago. The first time you corner it’s hard to hold your line because it feels like you’re riding really fast into a wooden wall, Deep breath, hold the black line, and look through the corner. You can get some sense of what that feels like here.

It’s real name is the Forest City Velodrome.

“The Forest City Velodrome is an indoor cycling facility in London, Ontario, Canada. The building was constructed in 1963 as the London Gardens, home to the London Knights ice hockey team. In 1994 it was renamed London Ice House. In early 2005 it was remodeled into the Forest City Velodrome by local cycling enthusiast and track racer Rob Good and Albert Coulier’s Apollo Velodrome Systems company. The Forest City Velodrome is the shortest permanent velodrome in the world, measuring 138 metres with 50-degree bankings and 17-degree straights.” From Wikipedia

I like this video, A mood piece from our trip to the Forest City Velodrome. Music by Dave Brubeck and Silvergun.

I’m not sure how much I’ll ride at the velodrome. I’m still mulling my options. See Seven winter cycling options (I’ve tried them all!)

I love track riding but prefer the more sensible 250 m tracks. I loved the Invercargill velodrome in New Zealand, also the outdoor one in Mosgiel, outside Dunedin, NZ. It was hard getting used to wind on the track and bad weather cancellations though.

Indoors, on a shorter track, the feeling of riding around in circles can sometimes feel incredibly thrilling. Whee! Speed! At other times, when there is a longer endurance piece of riding to do, it feels a bit like a hamster on wheel. My friend Bob used to refer to riding at the velodrome as “hamstering” for just this reason.

And hey, although this is a short, steep, scary track, at least there aren’t snakes in the infield.


Anyway, I think Track 1 is a fun thing to do with a group. If you ride a bike you can do Track 1. It’s terrifying looking but I’ve not known anyone not to make it through Track 1. Tracy and I are going with friends from our Saturday morning rides and our Thursday evening rides. We’re going for fun, as a group, and of course we’ll blog about it later!

We’re booked in for November 9th at noon. Interested? You can join us here.