You will see and / or take part in a number of different types of races in the league.
Below is a quick guide to the most common.
A simple bunch race, everyone starts together and first over the line wins.
A short scratch race but as the name implies riders should be racing from the start.
A long scratch race. The riders may start the race without being told the told the total number of laps they will be riding (Unknown Distance).
A 1-lap (sometimes shorter for the younger riders) scratch race. Riders may be held at the start.
Riders start at different places around the track. The slowest rider has to ride the shortest distance, the fastest rider has to ride the longest distance. First over the line wins.
As with the handicap riders start at different places but in small groups. The groups should work together to either take best advantage of their start they have been given or to catch up on the groups in front. Still first over the line wins.
A race over a set number of laps with sprint laps occurring at regular intervals during the race normally signalled by a whistle at the start of the lap. On each sprint lap the first four riders over the line are awarded points, 5 for 1st, 3 for 2nd. 2 for 3rd and 1 for 1st. Points are also awarded for taking a lap over the other riders but also deducted for losing a lap. At the end of the race the rider with the most points win. If riders have the same number of points then their places in the final sprint will decide between them. Riders must finish the race for their points to count.
The last rider (or sometimes two) across the line each lap is knocked out. The commissaire will announce before the start of the race how many riders will be left in for the final lap.
WIN AND OUT
At the end of the first lap, the first rider across the line wins the race and pulls out. At the end of the second lap, the first rider across the line comes second in the race and pulls out. This continues normally until the end of the fifth lap, when the first rider across the line comes fifth and pulls out. At that point, the remaining riders complete one final lap for all placings from sixth down. The commissaire may shorten the number of laps so that more riders gain points in the final lap.
Riders accumulate points by winning sprints or taking laps. With the exception of the first few laps (listen to the starter who will let you know how many), intermediate sprints occur every lap with the first rider in each sprint awarded one point. Riders can also gain four points for lapping the main field and any rider caught by the main peloton must immediately leave the track, losing any points they have accrued in the race. Positions on the final lap decide the placings of riders on the same number of points.
Similar to a tempo, but instead of one point each sprint lap, the value increases by one. So for the first sprint lap, one point, for the second two points etc. As per the tempo finishing positions on the final lap settle any ties or remaining points positions.
COURSE DES POINTS
Again, similar to a tempo, but points scored are added directly to a riders league total, they are not used to decide the result of the race. The last lap is for the usual finishing positions and points i.e. 1st through 6th.