Latest from UCI Road World Championships 2016
2016 UCI Road World Championships Overview
For the first time in the 89-year history of the UCI Road World Championships, the event heads to the Middle East, with Doha, Qatar chosen as the host. Due to the heat of Qatar, the Worlds move from the traditional September date to mid-October.
The 2016 Worlds courses, on paper, look suited to the sprinters - the first time since 2011 in Copenhagen - but as the Tour of Qatar has proven since its introduction onto the calendar, the racing on offer is hardly ever a straight forward affair.
Taking place from October 9-16, the men and women's team time trial events open proceedings on the first day ,with the junior women's and men's U23 time trials the next offering. The junior men and women race against the clock on the 11th with the 12th entirely given over to the elite men.
October 13 marks the first of the road races with the U23 men to cover 166km on the Doha circuit before the rainbow jersey can be awarded. Friday the 14th is a day for the junior men and women before the big final weekend for the elite women's 134.5km race on the Saturday, and the elite men's 257.5km race on the Sunday.
Peter Sagan became the sixth man in history and first since Paolo Bettini in 2006-07 to win consecutive world titles as the Slovakian timed his sprint to perfection in Doha. After his Belgian team had torn the race apart, Tom Boonen tried his best in the sprint but couldn't match the power of Sagan after 250km of racing, while Mark Cavendish mistimed his run to the line and won the race for silver.
"I don’t believe it. I’m still in shock," Sagan said. "I'm very happy because there was a crosswind and I was the last one to make the first group. In the end, it was a sprint so we should see.
Australian Michael Michael Matthews was fourth with Italian Giacomo Nizzolo in fifth place.
For the full race report, results, and photos, click here.
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Riders to watch at the 2016 UCI Road World Championships
In the men's time trials, the likes of three-time winner Tony Martin (Germany), Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands), Rohan Dennis (Australia) and current world champion Vasil Kiryienka (Belarus) will be in contention. German Lisa Brennauer and Dutchwomen Ellen van Dijk and Anna van der Breggen will be riders to watch in the women's event, while defending champion Linda Villumsen (New Zealand) won't be back to try and retain her title.
In the men's road race Mark Cavendish (Great Britain) will be looking to repeat his Copenhagen triumph, while Andre Greipel has got the nod to lead the German team over Marcel Kittel, who will be the plan B. France and Italy both have multiple cards to play but also potential leadership dilemmas, with Nacer Bouhanni and Arnaud Demare both selected for the French, and Elia Viviani and Giacomo Nizzolo for the Italians. Other danger men include Colombia's Fernando Gaviria, Australia's Caleb Ewan - with Michael Matthews also in the team - and the Norwegian duo of Alexander Kristoff and Edvald Boasson Hagen. Nor can reigning champion Peter Sagan (Slovakia) be discounted.
Kirsten Wild, a ten-time stage winner at the Tour of Qatar, would seem to be a big favourite for the women's race, though she'll face stiff competition from the likes of Belgium's Jolien d'Hoore and Australia's Chloe Hosking, who won La Madrid Challenge and La Course respectively this year, as well as two-time world Giorgia Bronzini (Italy).