Despite the bad luck of having nine bikes stolen just before the start of the World Championships in Stuttgart, Canada is getting ready with replacement bikes.Anne Samplonius of Montreal, who competes on opening day today, is vying for a top-10 finish in the women's time trial. "The goal is to obtain an additional spot for the Olympic Games," said Kris Westwood, high performance director for the Canadian Cycling Association. "Our goal in the men's time trial is top 15. It won't be easy but we can do it." Top hopes for the men are the interesting Svein Tuft and Ryder Hesjedal.
The time trial course has no flat sections. "It's a grinding course," said Westwood. "There are some technically-challenging turn. There's a lot of variety. The winner will be good, not lucky. The guys really liked it."
For the road race, Westwood won't announce the Canadian goals. "It's just so unpredictable," he said. "In the women’s elite race, we should start seeing some action at the end of the race. Everyone will be vigilant. Our goal will be to keep Erinne Willock (Victoria) and Alex Wrubleski (Regina) in the best possible position until the end."
The men's race should be fast from the start. "The teams will have to be ready for a breakaway early because no one will be able to dictate the race."
The women participating for Canada are in the road race Erinne Willock and Leigh Hobson. Alex Wrubleski and Anne Samplonius will be doing both, the road race and the time trial.
The U23 will consist of Keven Lacombe, Brad Fairall and Ryan Anderson in the road race and the double event rider David Veilleux, who will do both road race and time trial.
The men's elite team is comprised of time trialers Svein Tuft and Ryder Hesjedal. Tuft will also join the other road racers Cam Evans and Dominique Rollin on Sunday for the main event.