The British road and track cycling team has enjoyed extraordinary success in Olympic Games and World Championships over the last few years, with the like of Sir Chris Hoy writing himself into the record books with his performances. Despite this, the Great Britain team will freely admit to the enormous contribution that cutting-edge technology has made to its success.
For British fans, the action in the new Olympic Velodrome represents some of the best opportunities for medals, with the team having already won numerous medals and broken multiple world records. One of the principal reasons for this success has been the team's attention to detail, and by extension, its willingness to embrace innovation.
In recent years, for instance, the team has embraced computational fluid dynamics, which utilises computer processing power to model airflows. Through this, the team is able to see how a minor change to a bike will affect how the air behaves around it.
The bikes themselves are made of carbon fibre and although this technology has been around in the cycling world for more than a decade, the frames are becoming lighter all the time. "I've been working with carbon fibre for 15 years and I think it's really cool, sexy stuff to look at. It personifies high-tech," explained Chris Boardman, a retired cyclist who won gold at the 1992 Olympics.
"It's thin, light and incredibly strong. There's a minimum weight limit of 6.8kg - the bike cannot go below that - but we've used CFD to pick out all the right shapes for the tubes and handlebars."
The cranks, which attach the pedals to the axles, are equally cutting-edge, according to Boardman, who explained to the BBC that while they don't look spectacular, "they're actually hollow and made with 180 separate pieces of carbon fibre".
"To strength-test them, we took one and hung the equivalent of a lift full of people off it. It's 200 grams lighter than others but it still didn't break. It's two-and-a-half times stiffer than anything else in the market," he added.