Changeable weather conditions at the World Championship in the Netherlands, with heavy rain pre-race and intermediate showers throughout, made for tough cycling today at the Men’s Time Trials. The 45.7km course, including a wet and unforgiving cobbled opener and treacherous patched roads that claimed Italian Macro Pinotti as a casualty, was ultimately the scene of victory for reigning champion Tony Martin in a time of 58:38.76. America’s Taylor Phinney was desperately unlucky not to win, taking the silver down on a mere 5.37second margin, whilst Belarus’s Vasil Kiryienka took the bronze.
With Chris Froome having withdrawn ahead of the event to recover fully from success at the Tour de France, Vuelta and Olympics ahead of Sunday’s Road Race, only Alex Dowsett was left to represent Britain. A valiant ride rewarded him with a well-deserved eighth place, one up on pre-race favourite Alberto Contador.
Yesterday GB’s Emma Pooley – the 2010 World Champion – narrowly missed out on bronze in the Women’s Time Trial, finishing nine seconds off a podium place in an event won by Germany’s Judith Arndt. Arndt, the defending champion who is set to retire this month, took top spot by an impressive 33.77seconds over silver-placed Evelyn Stevens (USA) and 40.57seconds ahead of New Zealand’s Linda Melanie Villumsen in bronze. GB’s Wendy Houvenaghel finished a crushingly disappointing 14th, some 2minutes 17.5seconds behind Arndt.
Image © Wouter Roosenboom