How did we do with our Worlds Elite Men Time Trial pre-race predictions? We weren’t sure if slim Aussie Rohan Dennis could come back from his pre-Tour time trial abandon – but it’s amazing what a couple of months with a sport psychologist can do and the tattooed chrono specialist was in a class of his own.
Everyone happy then?
Well, if you’re the biggest bike manufacturer in the world and your ‘marquee’ – to use the Americanism – rider isn’t on one of your creations but rather a rival brand’s machine, would you be happy?
In our preview, I thought maybe the distance would be too much for young Belgian Classic winner Remco Evenepoel, but again he proved how seriously ‘special’ he is.
Our picture of him warming up shows a man with real focus; unfortunately, his team mate who shares the picture, and one of our tips, Yves Lampaert would end up on the tarmac.
Remco apart, a bad day for the Belgian ‘testers’ with Campenaerts also suffering a close encounter with the tarmac.
We said that Sen. Filippo Ganna was a classy individual and the bronze medal proved us correct – he’s not a treble world pursuit champion for nothing.
For the equipment anoraks, in the race he was on a non-Team Ineos issue front wheel, which I took to be a Zipp ‘humpback whale’ job BUT, Messrs. Jamie Davidson and Andrea Rossi inform me that it’s a Princeton Carbonworks Wake 6560. I stand corrected!
Before the start we spoke to our old friend, New Zealand team mechanic, Craig Geater; ‘Paddy will be looking to go top 10, today?’ I ventured.
‘We’re looking to do better than that!’ came the reply.
Bevin finished fourth, just two seconds off the podium.
The first of the placed riders we didn’t mention in our preview; fifth placed GB and Katusha-Alpecin, Alex Dowsett.
Dowsett is a social media master – was he Tweeting or Instagramming during his warm up?
It didn’t seem like a good time to ask.
This is his best time trial in a long while and comes with a healthy helping of UCI points.
EF Education First and USA rider Lawson Craddock is another we missed, he took sixth place – but fourth place in the Vuelta TT was a good hint at his form which we missed.
Not noted as a ‘chronoman,’ seventh for EF Eduation First’s Tanel Kangert at this level is a good ride for the man from Estonia.
We didn’t list eighth placed Portuguese TT specialist, Nelson Oliveira either in our preview; he was cool as a cucumber as he waited to ascend the steps to the start ramp.