Emma Pooley (Lotto-Belisol) stormed to victory in the women’s time trial at the British National Championships in Monmouthshire.
The former world time trial champion beat Pearl Izumi teammates Katie Archibold and, six-time Paralympic cycling champion, Sarah Storey. The title is the third for Pooley, who completed the 21-kilometre course in a time of 30:18. Defending champion Joanna Rowsell was unable to repeat the performance of 12 months ago and finished 6th, 1:23 behind Pooley.
"It was a really tough course, but it was a great one," a very happy Pooley told Cyclingnews at the finish – although, not before she made sure to text her mum the result first.
"I wasn’t too happy, because it started raining just as I was coming to the finish and it was a bit slippy. I think that climb at the end really suited me. Although I think that I would have come under a lot of criticism if I hadn’t done well."
The early starters got a clean run to the line, with the skies holding out. Lucy Coldwell set the early pace, with a time of 31:43. The Velosport-Pasta Montegrappa rider enjoyed almost half an hour in the hot-seat before track world champion Elinor Barker took a whopping 21 seconds out of her time.
Pooley was one of the last riders to roll down the starting ramp at the picturesque Celtic Manor in Monmouthshire. Pooley’s small frame and climbing abilities suited the lumpy course and made her a clear favourite from the start.
News that probably her toughest rival Lizzie Armitstead would not race made victory for the Lotto-Belisol rider almost a certainty. It wasn’t as straightforward as that. The 31-year-old still had to tackle the very technical course, which brought the riders along several steep and twisting descents that were ready to catch out anyone.
Pooley’s run began under clear skies, but as the finish line came into sight the heaven broke and the rain came down. Despite that, Pooley smashed Barker’s benchmark by more than a minute. Archibald and Storey followed her home, but were unable to better her time.
Defending champion Rowsell got the worst of the weather and still had to tackle the steep final climb into the manor’s grounds as the rain became harder. It was always going to be tough for the track rider to retain her title on such a tough course, and she won’t be too displeased with sixth.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Emma Pooley (GBr) Lotto-Belisol Ladies||0:30:18|
|2||Katie Archibald (GBr) Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International||0:00:39|
|3||Dame Sarah Storey (GBr) Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International||0:00:51|
|4||Elinor Barker (GBr) Wiggle Honda||0:01:04|
|5||Laura Trott (GBr) Wiggle Honda||0:01:09|
|6||Joanna Rowsell (GBr) Wiggle Honda||0:01:23|
|7||Lucy Coldwell (GBr) Velosport - Pasta Montegrappa||0:01:25|
|8||Danielle King (GBr) Wiggle Honda||0:02:10|
|9||Emily Robertson (GBr) CC Luton||0:02:48|
|10||Claire Galloway (GBr) Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International||0:02:53|
|11||Anna Christian (GBr) Epic Cycles - Scott WRT||0:02:55|
|12||Amy Roberts (GBr) Wiggle Honda||0:03:01|
|13||Maryka Sennema (GBr) Kingston Whls CC||0:03:33|
|14||Suzetta Guerrini (GBr) Boom Cycle CC||0:03:40|
|15||Elizabeth Malins (GBr) Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science||0:03:41|
|16||Rebecca Rimmington (GBr) Merlin Cycles||0:03:43|
|17||Gabriella Shaw (GBr) Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International||0:03:55|
|18||Joanne Blakeley (GBr) GB Cycles .co.uk||0:04:15|
|19||Tamina Oliver (GBr) Endura Lady Force - WV Zeeuws Vla||0:04:20|
|20||Alice Cobb (GBr) Squadra Donne||0:04:31|
|21||Laura Wasley (GBr) Fusion RT Gearclub Bike Science||0:04:42|
|22||Karen Poole (GBr) GB Cycles.co.uk||0:05:01|
|23||Karina Bowie (GBr) GVC Edmond De Rothschild||0:05:21|
|24||Ann Bowditch (GBr) GVC Edmond De Rothschild|
|25||Eleanor Jones (GBr) VC St Raphael||0:05:29|
|26||Helen McKay (GBr) Look Mum No Hands!||0:05:38|
|27||Emily Kay (GBr) Epic Cycles - Scott WRT||0:05:53|
|28||Elanor Cadzow (GBr) Bonito Squadra Corse||0:06:10|
|29||Marina Bleasdale (GBr) Guernsey Velo Club||0:06:25|
|30||Stephanie Post (GBr) Cardiff Ajax||0:06:43|
|31||Faye Faber (GBr) BC PM||0:07:16|
|32||Zoe Betteridge (GBr) North Devon Wheelers - South Fork||0:07:52|
|33||Louise Burnie (GBr) Loughborough Students CC||0:07:55|
|34||Adel Tyson-Bloor (GBr) Team Mulebar Girl - Sigma Sport||0:08:07|
|35||Sophie Lankford (GBr) Team WNT||0:08:33|