Cycling Betting Overview »
Ever since the success of Team GB at the Beijing Olympics, bookmakers have had to cope with an increased interest in cycling betting. Cyclists have also become fully-fledged celebrities, proving that the sport is now appealing to the masses like never before. Lance Armstrong’s triumphant haul of five Tour de France Yellow Jerseys was made all the more noteworthy due to his much publicised health problems. Closer to home, Chris Hoy became the first male Briton in 100 years to pick up 3 gold medals, making him a household name, as well as a knight of the realm. In fact, the only member of Team GB not to get amongst the medals in Beijing was Mark Cavendish, though after taking gold in last year’s world championships and the Green Jersey in the Tour de France, bookmakers are making him the strong favourite for the road race in 2012.
The profile of the sport has never been higher, and with London 2012 just around the corner, you can brush up on all the latest cycling betting odds as Team GB looks to better its impressive 14 medal haul four years ago. With many bookmakers, including Paddy Power, offering a raft of introductory offers there’s every reason to start paying attention.
Olympic cycling events are split into four main categories. These are track cycling, road cycling, mountain biking and BMX, with bookmakers offering a variety of markets for each. Most markets are spread across track and road cycling, which are split into sprint and endurance races. Sprint races are all about speed and athleticism, with riders competing over a short number of laps, whereas endurance events require riders to maintain stamina and concentration over a longer distance. The objective is the same in both; to cover the distance in the shortest possible time.
Team cycling differs slightly in that it involves multiple cyclists sharing the burden, and so is an interesting event to look at in terms of cycling betting. For example, the team sprint is a 3-man time trial held over 3 laps in a velodrome. At the end of each lap, the leading cyclist pulls up the banking to leave the second rider to lead the second lap. The second rider does the same, allowing the third rider to complete the last lap on his own. Many bookmakers offer markets on the individual lap times of the three riders, as well as the overall time.
The other main event in the cycling calendar is the Tour de France which, along with the Giro D’Italia and the Vuelta De Espana, makes up the three Grand Tours of European road cycling. The Tour remains the most prestigious, however, and winning the coveted Yellow Jersey is the pinnacle of any cyclist’s career.
The race covers a staggering 2,200 miles and last over 3 weeks, split up into day long stages. Individual times for each stage are aggregated to determine the overall winner, and the cyclist who records the fastest time for a particular stage goes on to wear the Yellow Jersey in the subsequent stage. Ladbrokes and Bet365 offer cycling betting odds for each stage, plus markets acknowledging several stage wins but an overall loss, odds on who will take which jersey (in the Tour, there are four) as well as being able to bet on the outright winner of the race.