Alex Dowsett and his Movistar team have confirmed that the Briton will attack the Hour Record in London at the former Olympic velodrome on Friday February 27 during round five of the Revolution track racing Series.
Dubbing the attempt the #perfecthour, Dowsett presented his attempt sat behind the white Canyon track bike he will use for the attempt. Dowsett has a strong track and time trial pedigree, winning the time trial stage at the 2013 Giro d'Italia and the gold medal in the time trial at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
He will be the third rider to attempt the Hour Record in 2015 after Australians Jack Bobridge and Rohan Dennis announced their attempts earlier this week. Bobridge will attack the Hour Record on Saturday, 31 January, at the Darebin International Sports Centre in Melbourne. Dennis will make his attempt in Grenchen, Switzerland on February 8.
The recent changes to the Hour Record rules by the UCI have sparked successful attempts by Jens Voigt and Matthias Brändle (IAM Cycling) in 2014. The German set a distance of 51.110km in September with Brandle beating it with a distance of 51.852km in late October.
Six-time Paralympic cycling champion Sarah Storey announced on Tuesday that she will attack the women's Hour Record at the Revolution. She will be the first woman to attack the record since Dutch rider Leontien Zijlaard-van Moorsel covered 46.065km in 2003.
Dowsett is reported to be already training for the Hour Record, mixing private track sessions paid for by Movistar with racing at his local track league on the London velodrome. He reveals he plans to spend Christmas training in Mallorca, to stay away from any temptations of the holidays.
For the Haemophilia community
Dowsett revealed that his motivation to attack the Hour Record came during an off-season trip to support the Miles for Haemophilia campaign. Dowsett races as a professional despite having Haemophilia.
"Things like the Commonwealth Games, the Olympics, the Tour de France and world championships hit home with the general public, but I truly had my eyes opened during my offseason this year when I travelled around Europe with the Miles for Haemophilia campaign," he explained.
"On these trips I saw my story was spreading hope: their boy or girl could in fact lead an ordinary life. So I thought: what more can I do to bring a positive outlook on the future to them, alongside my own personal career ambitions? Everyone understands a world record, so I wanted my next target to be the hour record,” Dowsett said.
The Hour is something I've always been interested in; the simplicity of it, mostly: no tactics, no hiding, just you and the bike. Now I've got a new sense of drive as I know that the more success I can achieve, the more hope it will give everyone in the whole rare disease community. We spend our childhoods being told what we can't do, so I'm going for the record for anyone that gets told what they can't do something and goes out to prove themselves otherwise. I'm training a hell of a lot harder because of it."
Movistar team manager Eusebio Unzué was invovled in Miguel Indurain's Hour Record attempt 20 years ago and is now backing Dowsett to set a new bench mark. Unzue agreed to give Dowsett a new three-year contract during the winter after he wore the leader's jersey at the Tour of Britain.
"Alex's attempt reflects the globalization of cycling and the internationalization of our team. Taking the chance with a British rider, at the Olympic velodrome in London, and adding that social aspect, with Alex taking such efforts to support those with rare diseases, himself being an ambassador of Haemophilia... I find this attempt perfect and positive for everyone, all circumstances have been put together,” he said.
“Without our partners, especially Canyon and Endura, we would have hardly made it to the start line. That two track riders, two big time trialists, like Bobridge and Rohan Dennis will set a distance beforehand will make it really difficult for us, but I hope this will become a further drive for Alex to tackle it."
Cyclingnews will have more from the Dowsett's Hour Record announcement later.