Well Bradley!! What a ride!! Yes; Sir Bradley Wiggins won the UCI Road World Championships time trial.
Bradley put a halt to Tony Martin's reign as world time trial champion and took his first ever world title in the elite men's event with a perfect ride on the Ponferrada course.
Bradley was slower than Martin at the first time split but had the speed and power to gradually carve out a significant lead over the 57.1km course. He set the fastest time at the second time split and then gained more time on the climbs in the final part of the course as he stayed tucked in his aero position and pushed huge power down on the pedals on his Pinarello time trial bike.
He stopped the clock in a time of 56:25.52 to take the rainbow jersey. Martin tried to fight back, pushing his huge 58-tooth chain ring but lost further time on the climb and finished 26 seconds slower. Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) took the bronze medal, confirming his time trialing talent by finishing 40 seconds slower than Wiggins.
Reckon Bradley had been training all season to bring it to the culmination with UCI Road World Championships time trial.
I now realize why Bradley has stuck with Sky for next season after contemplating that he must be on the move. With Sky he can get support for his track activities for what he is concentrating more on now. No other team would give him that support.
So it is eyes down for Sunday’s Men’s Elite Road Race. The elite men will face 254.8 gruelling kilometres, with 14 laps of the 18.2-kilometre course and over 4000-metres of climbing.
The Great Britain squad will be led by David Millar, the 37-year-old who captained Mark Cavendish’s memorable title bid in 2011 fulfilling the role for the final time before retirement.
Following his second place in the Vuelta a Espana, Chris Froome is in superb form and his climbing talents will be put to good use on the ascents of Confederacion and Mirador.
Ben Swift has highlighted that the world championships is a key goal for him, with parcours favouring a sprinter who can climb. Swift’s Team Sky squad-mate and 2014 British champion Pete Kennaugh has also had a superb 2014, winning the British road title in June and the Tour of Austria in July.
Geraint Thomas produced some compelling performances in 2014, seventh in Paris-Roubaix, winning the Bayern Rundfahrt in June and producing gritty performances in the classics-inspired stages of the Tour de France. Classics specialist Thomas topped off his season with Commonwealth Games road race gold in Glasgow and with the world title race course reminiscent of a classics course in length and severity, Thomas is sure to thrive.
Steve Cummings will provide the engine room of the nine-man Great Britain team. An essential part of Cavendish’s Copenhagen win, the BMC pro impressed at the Tour of Britain, placing second behind Wiggins in the time trial.
The dynamic duo of Simon and Adam Yates give Great Britain further options. Both riders signed pro contracts with Orica GreenEdge at the end of 2013, Adam opening his pro account with a win in the Tour of Turkey before getting his first Grand Tour ride at the Vuelta a Espana.
Simon broke his collarbone in the same race and missed much of the mid-season, returning to take bronze in the British championships before a surprise selection for the Tour de France, which saw the 21-year-old from Bury animate the race on stage eight as part of a five-man breakaway.
The team is completed by Luke Rowe, the 24-year-old Team Sky fresh from supporting Chris Froome at the Vuelta following a sixth place finish at the Commonwealth Games road race.
Until next week,
This was by far the best ToB seen since the Tour returned in 2004. Changing the course to include an obstacle in the last five or six kilometres has been instrumental and the time of the year is always a factor as well with people at different levels.
With 6 different holders of Yellow in the 8 days added to the spectacle and until the end you were never going to know who the winner was going to be.
So on the last Sunday it was still up for grabs with Team Sky rider and British time trial champion Bradley completed the 8.8-kilometre course on stage 8a in nine minutes and 50 seconds, 25 seconds quicker than Garmin-Sharp’s van Baarle.
The result left Baarle with an advantage of 22 seconds on Wiggins in the battle for the Friends Life Yellow Jersey heading into the final stage 8b.
The 88-kilometre stage in a city-centre circuit ended in the expected sprint finish as Mark Cavendish finished second behind German Marcel Kittel.
Britain’s Mark McNally had already wrapped up the Skoda King of the Mountains Jersey as Michał Kwiatkowski took the Chain Reaction Cycles Points Jersey. Seb Lander won the YodelDirect Sprints Jersey.
Nineteen-year-old Great Britain Cycling Team rider Tao Geoghagen Hart was an impressive 15th overall in his first-ever Tour of Britain.
So with Bradley third, Chris Froome went one better with a second in the Tour of Spain. Mr Contador just proved too much for the weight of the Team Sky to get a win to end the season on.
I am sure for next season Sky will have a good look at their results for 2014 and come back fighting with a better team and better tactics. They should be able as this as the best funded team. Maybe some changes at the top would help matters??
Interest has now sprung up again in the hour record after the days of Broadman v Obree. German Jens Voigt became the first rider crack 50 kilometres ridden in the world hour record since the UCI modified the rules earlier this year. Voigt bested the previous mark - set by Ondrej Sosenka on a standard bike without aerodynamic equipment in Moscow on July 19, 2005 - by more than a kilometer.
Voigt rode 51.115km, or more than 204 laps, over the hour on the Velodrome Suisse in Grenchen, Switzerland on Thursday night.
The Trek Factory Racing rider called an end to his road career at the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado in August, 2014, but soon announced his attempt at the record. When the day came, the German was more than up to the task.
The hour record dates back to the early days of the bicycle, but it was made famous in recent history by the long-standing record of Eddy Merckx. Although Merckx's mark of 49.431km held only until Francesco Moser broke 50km in 1984, the UCI retroactively changed the rules in 2000, disallowing all records set that did not adhere to the traditional position and equipment set by Merckx in 1972. Therefore, the efforts of Tony Rominger, Miguel Indurain, Graeme Obree and Moser were all relegated to the "best human effort" category.
In May, 2014, the UCI changed the rules, allowing all records set on equipment that conformed to the UCI rules at the time.
Here are the top 5 for “Best of Human Effort”:-
1 Chris Boardman (Manchester, UK)* September 7, 1996 56.375
2 Tony Rominger (Velodrome du Lac, Bordeaux)* November 5, 1994 55.291
3 Tony Rominger (Velodrome du Lac, Bordeaux)* October 22, 1994 53.832
4 Miguel Indurain (Velodrome du Lac, Bordeaux)* September 2, 1994 53.040
5 Graeme Obree (Velodrome du Lac, Bordeaux)* April 27, 1994 52.713
So until next week,
If Cyclo-X is your chosen avenue in the vast array of genre available to cyclist then call in the shop and see the 3 new Ridley Cyclo-X that have just arrived.
Also, Profile Carbon Wheels; we now have them in stock at an assortment of prices.
Another winner is the new Castelli Gabba Winter Jacket in a wonderful new sky blue colour, just in. It is a must for the discerning winter rider wanting to keep warm and dry at £180.
I didn’t realize until recently that the new Aske Clothing, which is produced by Yanto Barker, was designed by none other than Jon Locke. They come in a vivid red and the winter kit will shortly be arriving. We have been very pleased with how they have been selling. People like something a bit different!!
Of course the Aske Clothing goes on with the Aske Bike. To keep you up to date with the bikes development we have had a problem with getting the welding completed at the right price so Simon is off on a bike building course in October to learn all the finer points so we can get the bike on the road again. My red-orange-yellow Aske Bike is at present on display in the shop ready for my collection. Call in and have a look at the shape of things to come!!
An exciting day for cycling in the South west on Thursday with the 8th consecutive stage in Devon. A well thought out stage giving the cyclist a tough challenge as well as spectators some of the outstanding scenery which makes up Devon. Bradley is 5th some 27 secs down and looks to be struggling to repeat last year’s victory. The leader is a new name to watch who is making quite an impression; the Pole Michal Kwiatkowski (Omega Pharma-QuickStep).
And meanwhile the Tour of Spain is reaching its climax with just a few days to go. Chris Froome (Sky) has fought his way up the General Classification to a commendable 2nd spot but Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) just seems unbeatable with a lead of 1.19 over Chris. The last few days Sky have been making a big concerted effort to further Chris but a times you seem to question their tactics as the whole team leads for miles which just seems to wear the team out for when Chris really needs help his team is nonexistent??
Still Alberto is one rider that has got it all sussed. Not this time Sky.
Surprised to see this week that Bradley has signed again for Sky??
Until next week,
Thought the other week was going to be my last word concerning the “Jon Lockegate”. But an article in the Plymouth Herald has brought it all up again, and to me, has shed some light on the matter that was apparent from the beginning.
“Plymouth cyclist Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, banned for two years, says a blood sample taken for Team Sky two days after the test which saw him suspended proves he is innocent.
The cyclist who won the Tour of Britain has always protested his innocence and says blood irregularities that saw him banned were caused by heaving drinking the day before the test.
UKAD and UCI have ratified a ban for Tiernan-Locke's alleged use of the banned substance EPO or blood doping.
After the test Team Sky conducted another two days later which was analysed at the Central Manchester University Hospital.
The test was good enough for Team Sky to offer Tiernan-Locke a two-year contract.
UKAD said there is no reason to question the accuracy of the Team Sky test.
But UKAD say they are only allowed to take into account tests performed under the blood passport scheme.
Tiernan-Locke said: “That sample showed that the one test in question was just an anomaly from acute dehydration amongst other things. And, in a doping scenario, you certainly wouldn’t have seen the values return to normal for possibly weeks, not 48 hours.”
Tiernan-Locke, 29, says he cannot take the fight to clear his name any further, because he cannot afford to.
UKAD accepted a night out in Bristol before their test could have caused the levels in the blood, but they refused to believe that he did not rehydrate, by drinking water, before he took the test.
Tiernan-Locke also revealed that he had asked the UCI why, in the wake of their 2012 test, they had not ordered immediate “target-testing” of him – to identify any anomalies and then use further tests to detect if he was breaking the rules, rather than suspend him on suspicion.
His next test was more than two months later. “The UCI had no good response, and could not explain why I was not tested in the period following the worlds,” he said.
“We argued that, if they had done that, I would likely not be in this position.”
Tiernan-Locke will not be allowed to race or train with a UCI-accredited team until January, 2016.
Trust I can now put this topic to bed and wait until January 2016 to see what team Jon will be riding with unless before that date the cycling structure sees sense and quashes the ban.
Until next week,