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Can Science make a cyclist faster?

Can Science make a cyclist faster?

On Wednesday 11 November at 7pm we will be welcoming Professor Tony Purnell who will be asking whether science can make a cyclist faster.

Today's sports are very professional and no stone is unturned in the quest to go faster, higher, further. Cycling leads most Olympic sports in its approach to technology intervention, simply because the speeds involved make attention to the pointers that simple engineering analysis reveal as important pays dividends, especially when the margins for victory can be so very small.  

In this talk, Professor Tony Purnell will provide an overview of how science and technology have contributed to the raw speed of all Olympic cycling disciplines as well as the importance of incremental gains and avoiding incremental losses.

Materials technology, sports science, aerodynamics, friction engineering, physiology and nutrition all contribute along with determination, hard work and a clear mind as Professor Purnell asks if science can make a cyclist faster.

Tickets are free and are available on our Eventbrite page. If you have any enquiries or accessibility requirements please telephone us on 01904 527315 or email 

Please either print off your ticket or display it to us on your smartphone or tablet on the evening.

About the speaker

Professor Tony PurnellTony Purnell is Head of technical development for the Great Britain Cycling Team and Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor at the University of Cambridge.