Even in distant Bejing, Chris Hoy has not forgotten his roots. The triple gold medallist today called for Meadowbank velodrome, where he first rode the track, to be rapidly replaced
There?s only one way to describe Chris Hoy right now; tired. Very tired. Sitting talking to half a dozen British journalists in the Olympic village coffee bar as the Beijing drizzle teemed down outside, Hoy?s long, arduous journey to a historic gold triple is finally beginning to catch up with him.
In the Olympics alone, Hoy raced a staggering 12 times in Laoshan from Friday through to Tuesday. But if a spanking new Chinese ?drome lies at the end of the Scotsman?s path to Olympic gold, at the beginning was Laoshan?s equivalent in Edinburgh: Meadowbank, due for demolition, and as Hoy puts it, ?on its last legs.?
But - partly thanks to Hoy - Meadowbank holds an important place in British sporting history. Asked if he thought three gold medals was enough to save the old Scottish track, Hoy answered; ?I don?t know, it?s on its last legs, but it deserves to be replaced, even if it?s with some other facility in Edinburgh or the east of Scotland.?
?I don?t know if my actions could contribute towards saving a facility in Scotland, it?s not in my hands right now. But put it this way, all I can say to you categorically is if it wasn?t for Meadowbank, I wouldn?t be sitting here talking to you now.?
The justification for knocking down Meadowbank - a wooden, openair structure - is that Glasgow is building a velodrome for the Commonwealth Games in 2014. A housing development will be built on the Edinburgh site.
That will leave the east side of Scotland, not to mention the country?s capital, bereft of it's only track cycling facility. Even before Hoy took three golds in Beijing, Meadowbank had its place in Scotland?s sporting history.
|OLYMPIC GAMES 2008: TRACK|
Preview: Day five at the Laoshan
Brad on Cav: He's like a schoolkid he's so up for it
Day four as it happened: Team pursuit gold and another world record
Day three summary: Gold for Romero. Pendleton, Hoy in charge in sprints. Kenny the revelation
From rower to cyclist: Romero takes an emotional gold
Brits smash world team pursuit record in round one
Tough day for the Dutch
Preview: Monday at the Laoshan
Day two in pictures
Sunday's action as it happened
Preview: Sunday at the Laoshan
Day two at the track: Summary of the action
Hoy and Edgar clean up in the Keirin
Wiggins gets pursuit gold, Burke wins bronze
Newton storms to bronze in points race
Saturday's action as it happened: Two gold, a silver and two bronze for Britain
Blog: Life in Laoshan
Day one in pictures
Brits blast to team sprint gold
Day one at the track: Summary of the action
Friday's action as it happened: Gold for team sprint trio; Wiggins, Houvenaghel and Romero well in control
Burke blasts to new individual pursuit PB
British track stars raring to go
What makes the Laoshan such a challenge
Picture special: CW takes you inside the Laoshan velodrome
Can these legs make an Olympic champion?
Cavendish unlikely to ride individual pursuit
How many medals will Britain's riders win?
|OLYMPIC GAMES 2008: NEWS|
Cooke and Thomas to get heroes' welcome in Wales
Positive test for cyclist at Olympic Games
Bettini chasing second Olympic gold
Romero poses nude for ad
British quartet eyeing new world record
As Olympics approach two new drugs emerge
Beijing Blog 2
Beijing Blog 3
|OLYMPIC GAMES 2008: ROAD|
Picture special: Women's time trial
Cancellara wins men's time trial gold
Men's time trial reaction: Steve Cummings on his ride
Women's time trial reaction: I feel fantastic, says Pooley
Pooley wins silver in women's time trial
Cooke's secret was the skinsuit
What the papers say... about Nicole Cooke
Analysis: women's road race
Gold for Nicole Cooke in Women?s road race
Reaction: It?s a dream to win Gold, says Cooke
Women's Olympic road race picture special
Sanchez gives Spain gold in thrilling men?s road race
Who is Samuel Sanchez?
Tactical analysis: Reading the men?s Olympic road race
British riders suffer in hot and humid Olympic road race
Rebellin misses out on golden birthday
Brailsford confident ahead of women?s road race
|OLYMPIC GAMES 2008: GUIDE|
Olympics cycling results>>
Cycling event schedule>>
Great Britain rider profiles>>
Cycling event guide>>
Every British cycling medal ever won at the Olympic Games
From paupers to kings: The lottery funded revolution>>
Track results at the Worlds and Olympics 2004-2008
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