Mikkel Bjerg will make another run at UCI Hour Record

U23 time trial world champion Mikkel Bjerg will take another shot at Bradley Wiggins' UCI Hour Record later this year after setting the second-longest effort last October. The 20-year-old Dane has attempted the feat twice, most recently coming 796 metres short of Wiggins' record, riding 53.730km in October to Wiggins' 54.526.

In an interview published by Zipp - a sponsor of Bjerg's Hagens Berman Axeon road team - the two-time U23 time trial world champion said he will make a practice run in June before setting the final date for his official attempt, which he said will come after the world championships in Yorkshire this September.

"This year is a bit special for me," Bjerg said in the Zipp interview. "I obviously have the world championships really late in the season, so everything leading up to that world championships is more or less preparation, especially now because I will do the hour record after the under-23 world championships in Yorkshire. This year is for me a year when I can really prepare myself for those two big main events."

Bjerg first attempted the hour record in 2017 when he was 17, setting a new Danish mark of 52.311km.

"I pretty much just took apart my bike and threw some disc wheels on it and turned it into a track bike basically," he said, explaining his minimal preparation at the time. "Last year I got a bit more into it. I got a more track-specific frame. I was really trying to see how far I can push it and I set a new Danish record. The goal this year is to break the UCI Hour Record."

By the time Bjerg makes his attempt after the world championships, however, he may have a new benchmark to beat as European time trial champion Victor Campanaerts will attempt the record next month at altitude in Mexico. Bjerg said he will likely make his attempt in either Switzerland or Denmark.

"I don't think altitude would benefit me right now because I would lose too much power in altitude," he said. "I've never really done any altitude training. I'll have to find out how much power I lose in altitude."

Bjerg is currently competing with Hagens Berman Axeon in Coppi e Bartali, where he is 16th overall after the team finsihed fourth in the stage 1b team time trial.


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