Drama, suspsense, heroics, big efforts, exciting races and rain, lots and lots of rain…. That’s how many fans will remember the UCI World Road Champs held in Harrogate last week.
Here are our five big Stories from the Yorkshire Worlds…
Mens TT – Rohan’s Redemption
Following a swift, mysterious exit from the Tour De France, the day before the Time Trial, (due to his issues with to his team’s equipment suppliers) Rohan Dennis was a man on a mission. Riding his prefered choice of bike and helmet, Rohan sent a strong message to the cycling world. Silver medal went to Belgian Wonder Kid, Remco Evenepoel. Italian powerhouse, Philippo Ganna took the bronze medal.
U23 Mens Road Race Controversy
The most controversial race of the week came in the U23 mens road race. Initially the result looked clear cut and straight forward. 1st Nils Eekhoff, 2nd Samuele Battistella (Italy), 3rd Stefan Bissegger (Switzerland).
However… The commissaire panel took quite some time to rule that Nils Eekhoff had been towed back to the group following a heavy crash.
Eekhoff’s disqualification divided opinion amongst cycling fans. The biggest issue seemed to be around the subjective interpretation of the UCI rulebook and why Eekhoff was left in the race, effecting the final result, rather than being pulled out of the race when the supposed infringement actually happened. The updated result meant that Tom Pidcock from Leeds, stepped onto the podium and collected a Bronze medal. A deserving result considering his recent crash at Tour L’Avenier – however not the ideal way to win a medal.
22 Year old Chloe Dygert-Owen stomped her authority to take an emphatic victory in the Womens TT by over a minute and a half. Chloe’s finishing time would have given her 12th place in the Mens U23 TT over the same distance. How many World titles can the young american rider take in the years ahead…
Riding away from the world’s best bunch with 105 kilometres to go, could be seen as a tad optimistic. However, Annemiek Van Vleuten made her audacious move on the tough Lofthouse climb to push for home alone. By the time she hit the Harrogate finishing circuit, the thousands of visiting Netherlands fans were not dissapointed. Anna Van Der Breggen took the Silver medal ahead of third placed Amanda Spratt from Australia.
Rain, Rain Go Away…
The Mens road race caught the worst of the week’s weather. So much so, that the tougher section through Buttertubs & Grinton got cut from the event because of flooding. The race through the ‘Amber Weather Warning’ turned into a war of attrition and survival for the riders with only 46 finishers from a start list of 197. After six and a half hours of heavy rain and wind, 23 year old Mads Pedersen (Denmark) took the win ahead of Matteo Trentin (Italy) and Stefan Kung (Switzerland). Pre race favourite, Mathieu Van Der Poel, blew up spectacularly on the final lap of the race and lost 11 minutes in the last few kilometres.
Photos from earlier in the Week