Ice speedway

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Description:
Ice Speedway is a developed form of Speedway racing, featuring racing on frozen surfaces. The sport uses bikes enhanced for the terrain. Participants can compete at international level.

Outline

The bikes race anti-clockwise around oval tracks between 260 and 425 metres in length. The race structure and scoring are similar to that in speedway.

Bike construction

The bikes bear a passing resemblance to those used for speedway, but have a longer wheelbase and a more rigid frame. As with speedway, the bikes do not have brakes.

The sport is divided into classes for full-rubber and studded tyres. The studded tyre category involves competitors riding on bikes with spikes up to 3 centimetres in length screwed into each treadless tyre, each bike has 90 spikes on the front tyre and 200-500 on the rear (regulations on length and types of permissible studs are controlled by the sanctioning body). The use of these spikes in this discipline necessitate the addition of special protective guards (similar to mudguards) over the wheels which extend almost to the ice surface. The spiked tyres produce a tremendous amount of traction and this means two-speed gearboxes are also required.

Technique

In the studded tyre class there is no broadsiding around the bends due to the grip produced by the spikes digging into the ice. Instead, riders lean their bikes into the bends at an angle where the handlebars just skim the track surface. Speeds approach 80 mph (130 km/h) on...
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