Will Detroit produce the next Olympian?
It seems like the Motor City is quickly and ironically becoming a bicycle city. It's fitting, then, that we've become home to one of only three indoor velodromes in the country. A velodrome is a steeply banked oval cycling track, and Lexus Velodrome on Mack Avenue in Detroit is one-tenth mile around and boasts 50-degree turns and 15-degree straights. Cyclists make their way around on custom bikes that have no brakes and no coasting ability.
The 64,000-square-foot facility accommodates both fitness cycling and competitive races, held every other Saturday throughout the summer and televised on PBS. Also inside are lanes fit for walking, running and inline skating, and a 1,200-square-foot fitness studio where you can take kickboxing, Pilates and other classes of the sort for a $2 drop-in fee. All programs including cycling are free for those 17 and under, and 6- and 12-month passes are available for everyone else.
Dale Hughes, executive director of Detroit Fitness Foundation, the nonprofit organization that manages Lexus Velodrome, says "we think we have a safe haven place for kids to come, have some fun, train a little bit, and who knows? We may find that next Olympian."
601 Mack Ave., Detroit