They are two of Great Britain’s hottest sports stars, both vying to be the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year, but they specialize in vastly different disciplines.
Thirty-two-year-old Chris Hoy won three gold medals on the velodrome at this summer’s Beijing Olympics and 23-year-old Lewis Hamilton is the youngest-ever world champion in Formula 1 auto racing.
Despite their reliance on different tools of the trade, promoters of the upcoming Race of Champions have concluded that the two might be able to match their respective skills in a head-to-head race over the course of a twisting one-kilometer route to be constructed on the field of London’s Wembley Stadium next month.
On December 14, the two will meet in a widely touted “Man vs. Machine” contest on a parallel track originally designed to test the mettle of top auto racers representing a cross-section from motor sport’s various two- and four-wheeled disciplines. As part of the pre-show entertainment, Hoy will match his acceleration and bike-handling abilities against Hamilton, a skilled driver who will be behind the wheel of a 600 horsepower Mercedes-Benz SLR road car.
Hoy, who will be astride his Dolan track bike, says it may be a tighter contest than many might believe.
“It’s going to be a great opportunity and an intriguing prospect,” said Hoy. “I expect it to be close.”
The course may offer Hoy some advantages, in that the king of the velodrome will certainly be able to dive through the sharp corners much faster than even the most skilled driver. Neither, however, is willing to predict a winner just yet.
“This going to be something very special,” said Hamilton. “I’ve done F1 demonstration runs away from race tracks before, but Wembley stadium is completely different. The atmosphere is going to be crazy.”
“It’s a completely different kind of venue to anything I’m used to,” Hoy added. “I think it will be great fun and I am curious to see what will happen.”
Wembley Stadium tickets for the Race of Champions will range from £18 to £199, but the event will also be broadcast live on Eurosport and Al Jazeera Sports.
Keeping on subject. . I would enjoya cyclist vs the solartaxi race.
Solartaxi power 1.2 kW (depending on sunlight)
Pro-cyclist 450 continuous watts
Interesting way to spread the word.
The Solartaxi crew is traveling the world powered by sunlight.