El Capitane by: Stevie Gee - Deathspray customs - Tour de Ville

El Capitane by: Stevie Gee - Deathspray customs - Tour de Ville

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Lost glory or the future of Herne Hill

Is this the way Herne Hill is heading?

The pictures below are of the old and (obviously) abandoned outdoor velodrome of Roeselare in Belgium.

The velodrome was founded by Odiel DeFraye, the first Belgian Tour de France winner in 1912, just after the first world war. In 1925 the earth track was replaced by the current 163m concrete one.

The velodrome is (typically) situated behind a cafe that has fallen into equal disrepair since the closure of the track.

Legendary names like Briek Schotte, Rik Van Steenbergen, Marcel Kint and Patrick Sercu have all raced here. After a big regeneration in the sixties by Albert Sercu, the father of Patrick, the velodrome has been steadily falling into disrepair during the nineties.

Being granted a listed status in 2002 has fueled a renewed interest and there is now a private initiative to make the track suitable for racing purposes and youth development projects once again. History is repeating itself here because the man leading the redevelopment has a little son who aspires to be a track racer in the future...

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