The American held a steady 48 km/h from start to finish, beating Australian Bridie O’Donnell’s previous benchmark of 46.882km set at the Super-Drome in Adelaide in January.
"In the beginning I really wanted to stay calm," Stevens said. "More than anything it was an opportunity to be great. As I said earlier, it's not common to get a chance to set a world record. I can't believe this many people came to watch me. Knowing that made me go a little bit harder. The amount of support was really flattering."
Stevens made her UCI Hour Record attempt in the Colorado Springs Olympic Training Center Velodrome. She announced her plan to do so at the beginning of February, two weeks after O’Donnell set her benchmark of 46.882km at the Super-Drome in Adelaide.
She was the second American to attempt the Hour Record after Molly Shaffer Van Houweling broke the long-standing record of 46.065km that Leontien van Moorsel set without aerodynamic gear in Mexico City in 2003. Van Houweling rode 46.273km in September 2015 in Aguascalientes, Mexico, only to be beaten by O’Donnell four months later.
“I would like to congratulate ‘Evie’ on her achievement tonight. Bridie O’Donnell’s record stood for five weeks and we have already seen two attempts this year despite only being in February," said UCI President Brian Cookson in a press release.
Van Houweling was on hand at Stevens’ event and provided viewers with information about her experience that included how Stevens should and should not be feeling during the opening 15 minutes of her attempt and during the final 15 minutes of her attempt.
Stevens kicked off her UCI Hour Record attempt with a 31.4-second opening lap, a conservative start that ramped up to just under 25 seconds, consistently, for the first 15 minutes of her event.
Although she appeared to be unsteady on her bike during the halfway mark, she held an on-pace average speed of 48.014 km/h, still maintaining roughly 24 to 25 seconds per lap for the duration of her event.
"It couldn't have been a more perfect day. I was able to really hit my split times. I wanted to bring it down faster at the end but you don't know your limit until you're out there."
Kirsten Frattini has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level all the way to the World Cup. She is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. Kirsten has worked in both print and digital publishing. She started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006, and was responsible for reporting from the US and Canadian racing scene. Now as a Production Editor, she produces international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits global news and writes features.
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