By Shane Stokes
Tyler Hamilton took his first win in roughly a year when he won the Volkswagen M t Washington Auto Road Hillclimb in New Hampshire, USA on Saturday. The 2003 Tour de France stage winner and Athens Olympic time trial champion is currently banned from UCI events for two years for blood doping, but was able to take part in the race due to its independent, unsanctioned status.
Hamilton previously set an event record when he won the race in 1999, but this was improved upon in 2002 when Tom Danielson set a time of 49'24.
Hamilton was up on record at the halfway point but ran into strong head and cross-winds near the top. He finished the 7.6 mile race in 51'11, 1'47 off Danielson’s pace.
Second-placed rider Anthony Colby was 4'01 second back, while MTB legend Ned Overend marked his 50th birthday with an impressive fourth place. His time of 55'21 seconds was several minutes ahead of previous records for those over 40.
Aimee Vasse took the women’s race for the second year running, despite being blown off her bike by strong winds. She crossed the line over four minutes clear of runner-up Kerry Litka.
Hamilton is currently appealing his ban to CAS. The hearing is expected to start on September 6th, with his future career prospects hinging on the outcome of the case. Current rules dictate that if CAS upholds the ban, Hamilton will be prevented from riding with a ProTour team for a total of four years.