The Cyclodrome was where the football team, the Providence Steam Roller played. It opened on June 3, 1925 and was considered a state-of-the-art facility, featuring a wooden five-lap track. Designed to hold 13,000 fans, making it the largest bicycle track anywhere in the nation at the time. Cycling enjoyed a large and fervent audience in Providence. For the city’s 250th anniversary in 1886, the Rhode Island chapter of the League of American Wheelmen staged a parade of 1500 cyclists through the streets of Providence. Although nationally interest in cycling peaked in the 1890s, most cities and many colleges still sponsored teams. From the names found in several programs anywhere from one half to two-thirds of Cyclodrome riders were of Italian descent. The local star was Vincent Madonna, called the Babe Ruth of cycle racing and when Madonna raced attendance would reach 25,000. He placed fourth on Opening Night’s main event, the 30-mile race. Madonna was one of several Italian-Americans from either Providence or Pawtucket to race at the Cyclodrome. The city’s large Italian American community may have accounted for the success of the Cyclodrome as a racing venue. Ineligible for the American Cyclist Title, because he was foreign born, Madonna carried the flag of Italy in the popular Golden Race Extravanganza. He had a huge following of Italian supporters who were responsible for giving him the nickname “Poosha Madonna.” When racers were heading toward the finish line they would scream POOSHA, POOSHA MADONNA to cheer him on. This was the war cry that inspired half the fans and infuriated the rest. At only five feet two he once recorded the speed of 67 miles per hour.