While much has rightly been made of the fact that the UCI Track Champions League is a rare event where the female athletes are regarded as every bit the equal of their male equivalents, it remains the case that rather more women have spoken about the issue than men.
One who has, however, chosen to speak out on the subject is Thailand’s Jai Angsuthasawit.
“I think it should be more equal,” he said firmly, in an interview with Eurosport ahead of this weekend's final two rounds of racing in London.
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Although, he adds, “I think we are getting better, I think it’s still a bit hard, because there’s not as many women cyclists as there are men, so obviously there’s going to be a bit of a sponsor problem, where the sponsors will disregard women, because there’s not as many of them.”
Even coming from the men’s side of the sport, Angsuthasawit knows what it is to struggle in track cycling. Although evidently a strong rider, with a talent that was apparent from a young age, he struggled to make it in the competitive national racing programme of Australia, the country of his birth.
“I did represent Australia [originally],” he says, “but I was in and out of the programme, as an elite rider, and couldn’t make it up to the team. I wasn’t fast enough, basically.”
After falling out of contention for Australia he spent two years riding as a solo athlete before, “Thailand approached me to try out for the team. I went there, won some sprints and keirins, and was on the team. From 2018 onwards I’ve just been part of the Thai team.”
Representing Thailand has worked out well for him. That same year Angsuthasawit won Thailand’s first gold medal in men’s cycling in the Keirin at the Asian Games. He has since earned a spot at the elite World Cycling Centre in Aigle, Switzerland, where he is able to train full-time as an athlete. It’s all added up to the kind of career in the sport that he might not have otherwise had.
Including invitations to compete in events such as the UCI Track Champions League, in which he is acquitting himself more than respectably.
After two rounds, Angsuthasawit finds himself in 12th place, with 19 points.

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Apart from his own performance, which is holding up well against several of the best sprinters in the world, the 26 year-old is most pleased to see that the event is delivering on its promise to broaden the appeal of track cycling.
“From a publicity standpoint I think it’s a very big deal,” he says. “With the reach we got in the last event that I saw, you don’t get that in many events. You barely see those numbers at the World Championships. Just the numbers that we’ve seen from the TV broadcast alone is crazy. Just for sponsors, and just to get our names out there, it’s really important.”
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The UCI Track Champions League returns for round three on December 3 and you can watch all of the action live on the Eurosport app, eurosport.co.uk and discovery+.
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