Video, Derby Arena: Telegraph reporter Joey Severn takes to the velodrome

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By Joey Severn

Derby Telegraph reporter  Joey Severn takes to the cycle track at Derby Arena.

Derby Telegraph reporter Joey Severn takes to the cycle track at Derby Arena.

In my imagination, I am riding full tilt behind Mark Cavendish, waiting to make my move on the final bend to take the line and win the gold medal.

In reality I am tucked behind fellow cycling fan and Telegraph colleague Victoria Wilcox on the brand new Derby Arena track.

But the feeling of being within a foot of her back wheel as the wind rushes in my ears and the legs start to burn is fantastic.

I stood on the same site in April 2013 for the ground-breaking ceremony as work got under way.

At that point it was still, to all intents and purposes, a car park.

It was difficult to visualise exactly what the arena would look like, how it would feel and whether thedreams of the city council could be imagined.

Less than two years later, that dream has been realised.

From the outside, the drooping Zippy-from-Rainbow-mouth has a certain charm that greets you as you drive into the car park.

And while, at 250 metres long, the track is a huge space, it feels intimate.

Out on the track and we have a steady roll around the bottom of the track before moving on to the wooden boards themselves.

For anyone who saw the stunning time lapse video of the wood being installed by the specialist track building company from Germany it is just as beautiful in real life.

The banking, which at 42 degrees rises up like a wall, feels incredibly stable as your bike seems to be guided round as if it is on a pair of rails.

While the track takes centre stage, there are a multitude of other facilities, one of which is the state-of-the-art gym which sits above the track, giving amazing views over Pride Park as well as the interior of the arena.

Treadmills and other pieces of equipment are hooked up to the internet so you can read e-mails, catch up on the news or anything else you want to while you’re working out.

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