Rio cancels cycling test because velodrome is not ready

Thu Mar 24, 2016 6:28pm EDT
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RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Rio Olympics organizers have canceled the only test event for the indoor cycling at this year's Games because the velodrome will not be ready in time, a spokesman said on Thursday.

The event was due to take place on April 30 and May 1 but logistical problems mean the velodrome will not be ready until at least May 31.

"The track cycling test event has been canceled and will be replaced by a training opportunity June 25th through the 27th,” Mario Andrada told reporters.

"We are 120 per cent confident it will be ready for the Olympics."

Andrada said the delay came in laying the track, which is made from Siberian wood.

"We had some logistical problems, such as unloading the wood into the venue and to install containers and offices, and we realized that it was too close for us to make sure that the track was perfectly installed," Andrada said.

South America's first Olympic Games begin on Aug. 5 and run until Aug 21.

(Reporting by Bradley Brooks, writing by Andrew Downie, editing by Ed Osmond)

An aerial view of the Rio 2016 Velodrome venue at the Olympic Park construction site in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 29, 2015.  REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes