Durbridge and Tuft break course record at Duo Normand

Tuft powers at the head of the Orica-GreenEdge train

Tuft powers at the head of the Orica-GreenEdge train (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Luke Durbridge and Svein Tuft (Orica GreenEdge) have delivered a record breaking performance to win the 1.1 Duo Normand in Normandy, France, on Sunday. Whilst their GreenEdge teammates and respective Australian and Canadian compatriots where competing in the World Championship Road Race in Florence, the pairing were busy defending their 2012 pairs time trial title.

Durbridge and Tuft clocked a time of 1:04:10, 1:20 ahead of teammates Michael Hepburn and Jens Mouris, and 37 seconds quicker than the course record set by Chris Boardman and Jens Voigt in 1999 for French team Crédit Agricole.

"To finish up the time trial season and have it all come together like this is really special," said Durbridge. "We missed out on the gold medal at Worlds [in the team time trial] by less than a second, so it's a great feeling for us to break the record that's been standing for 14 years. I've done a lot of training and racing with Svein this year. It's pretty special to share this moment with him."

After starting very aggressively last year, Durbridge made sure to adopt a more conservative pacing strategy and it paid dividends for the 22-year-old.

"We went out really hard last year," explained Durbridge. "I ran out of legs toward the end and Svein carried us to the finish. This year, I tried to control myself more and ride a little bit more evenly.

"We learned from our mistakes and didn't go out as hard so that we could hold our pace until the end."

The strong performances by both GreenEdge teams is something that Durbridge attributed to the team's preparation coming into the World Championships.

"When you do a three week team time trial training camp leading into worlds, there's not much else that needs to be done," explained Durbridge. "Our training doesn't need to get any more specific than that. I think we did one ride together last week and then rocked up today ready to race."

Tuft will end his season following the race in Normandy, whilst Durbridge will go on to contest Il Lombardia and the Tour of Beijing before drawing his season to a close.

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