The grout topping is the key to the track. The texture, which feels like something between a 200- and 300-grit sandpaper, helps keep the bikes in place as they circle the track. But that feature was not easy to accomplish. “In Europe, contractors use sand from ancient riverbeds to achieve the texture; we don’t have ancient river beds like that here,” Rogers says. Instead, Carolina Floors spent two and a half months testing sands and grouts and mailing test panels to Germany where the architect would run his hand over them and tell Carolina Floors if they were close. “The entire time I’m thinking, ‘Oh my, what did we get ourselves into?!’ I couldn’t sleep, I lost weight ... I was extremely worried,” Rogers recalls. It took 25 test batches to finally achieve the correct texture, which turned out to be a mixture of manufactured sandblast sand and local sand.
Challenges aside, the velodrome was a success. Carolina Floors finished a labor intensive, highly precise, handcrafted floor with the tools it holds in the highest regard — the talent, craftsmanship and quality mindset of its employees.
And Rogers says it will be a project everyone involved will remember. “The superintendent on this project, vice president Joe Briggs, created a camaraderie among our men, the GC’s men, the ready mix producer, and the architect and engineers. Each member of this team will talk about this project as one, if not the, highlight of their careers,” he says.