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Olympics: Primoz Roglic wins gold for Slovenia in men's time trial

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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia rides during the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Michael SteeleGetty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia poses with the gold medal after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Roglic shows off his gold medal (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Rohan Dennis (Australia) took bronze. (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Switzerlands Stefan Kueng competes in the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Greg Baker AFP Photo by GREG BAKERAFP via Getty Images

Stefan Kung heartbreakingly finished a fraction outside the medals (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Belgiums Wout van Aert competes in the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Greg Baker AFP Photo by GREG BAKERAFP via Getty Images

Wout van Aert had a disappointing day (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Filippo Ganna (Italy). (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic R is congratulated by Netherlands Tom Dumoulin after the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Greg Baker AFP Photo by GREG BAKERAFP via Getty Images

Dumoulin congratulates his trade teammate Roglic (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia poses with the gold medal after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Michael SteeleGetty Images

Roglic performs his ski-jumper celebration on the Olympic podium (Image credit: Getty Images)
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LR Silver medalist Netherlands Tom Dumoulin gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic and bronze medalist Australias Dennis Rohan pose on the podium after the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Ina FASSBENDER AFP Photo by INA FASSBENDERAFP via Getty Images

Roglic loving life on the podium (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic celebrates with his team after the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Greg Baker AFP Photo by GREG BAKERAFP via Getty Images

Big celebrations in the Roglic camp (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Gold medalist Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia is lifted up by his team to celebrate their victory after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Michael SteeleGetty Images

Roglic celebrates (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Tom Dumoulin of Team Netherlands poses with the silver medal after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Dumoulin with his silver medal (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 LR Silver medalist Tom Dumoulin of Team Netherlands gold medalist Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia and bronze medalist Rohan Dennis of Team Australia pose on the podium during the medal ceremony after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Happy faces on the podium (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Rohan Dennis of Team Australia poses with the bronze medal after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Dennis with his bronze medal (Image credit: Getty Images)
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LR Silver medalist Netherlands Tom Dumoulin gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic and bronze medalist Australias Dennis Rohan pose on the podium after the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Ina FASSBENDER AFP Photo by INA FASSBENDERAFP via Getty Images

The podium ceremony (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

George Bennett (New Zealand) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Rigoberto Uran (Colombia) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Nicolas Roche (Ireland) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

João Almeida (Portugal) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Lawson Craddock (USA) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Wout van Aert (Belgium) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Max Schachmann (Germany) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Tao Geoghegan Hart (Great Britain) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Primoz Roglic (Slovenia) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Stefan Kung (Switzerland) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Rohan Dennis (Australia) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Geraint Thomas (Great Britain) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Brandon McNulty (USA) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Tom Dumoulin of Team Netherlands rides during the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Tom Dumoulin during his ride (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Primoz Roglic (Slovenia) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Hugo Houle (Canada) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Primoz Roglic (Slovenian) en route to gold (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Remco Evenepoel (Belgium) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Brandon McNulty (USA) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Stefan Kung (Switzerland) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Toms Skujins of Team Latvia rides during the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Michael SteeleGetty Images

Toms Skujins (Latvia) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Tokyo 2021 men's individual time trial

Wout van Aert (Belgium) (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic reacts after winning the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Greg Baker AFP Photo by GREG BAKERAFP via Getty Images

Roglic after his ride (Image credit: Getty Images)
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Gold medalist Slovenias Primoz Roglic poses on the podium after the mens cycling road individual time trial during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama Japan on July 28 2021 Photo by Ina FASSBENDER AFP Photo by INA FASSBENDERAFP via Getty Images

Roglic with his gold medal (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia poses with the gold medal after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Joy for Roglic (Image credit: Getty Images)
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OYAMA JAPAN JULY 28 LR Silver medalist Tom Dumoulin of Team Netherlands and gold medalist Primoz Roglic of Team Slovenia speak on the podium during the medal ceremony after the Mens Individual time trial on day five of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Fuji International Speedway on July 28 2021 in Oyama Shizuoka Japan Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Dumoulin and Roglic on the podium (Image credit: Getty Images)

Primož Roglič (Slovenia) bounced back from Tour de France heartbreak to win the men’s Olympic Games time trial title with a thoroughly commanding performance in Tokyo on Wednesday.

The 31-year-old finished the 44.2km course in a time of 55:04 to take the gold medal, having set the fastest times at all but the first time check at 9.7km. 

Roglič was untouchable, pacing himself perfectly over the climbs to pull away from all of his rivals over the technical and demanding Tokyo course.

Staggeringly, not a single rider was able to finish within a minute of Roglič, with a resurgent Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) taking silver with a time 1:01 down on his Jumbo-Visma teammate.

Rohan Dennis (Australia), who looked in contention at the halfway point, was forced to settle for bronze, 1:03 down on the winner. 

There was huge disappointment for Stefan Küng (Switzlerand), who missed out on a medal by less than half a second.

World time trial champion Filippo Ganna (Italy) was the fastest rider at the first check at 9.7km but the hilly parcours was too much for the Italian, who faded consistently throughout the race and was forced to settle for fifth on the day. 

Another pre-race favourite, Wout van Aert (Belgian) came unstuck on the second lap and crossed the line in sixth.

There was no doubting Roglič and his performance, though. The two-time Vuelta a España winner came into the crash after crashing out of the Tour de France and finishing out of contention in the men’s road race on Saturday. 

He set off like a train and was less than half a second down on Ganna at the first check. At that point, the top six riders at the finish were separated by less than 10 seconds but as the course unfolded the gaps started to increase. 

At 15km, Roglič was less than a tenth of a second up on Van Aert, with Ganna, Kung, Dennis, and Dumoulin just a handful of second further back. By the end of the first lap, Roglič was over eight seconds clear of his closest rivals but the second lap saw the Slovenian pull away from the entire field. 

At 37.1km, Dumoulin was closest at 42 seconds, while Van Aert had drifted out to a minute back. Dennis rose to second on the road but then dropped to fifth before recovering to take his second ever Olympic medal, while Dumoulin secured the same place from the 2016 Rio Olympics.

How it unfolded

The men rode two laps of the 22.1-kilometre circuit, which started and finished at the Fuji Speedway. It began with a 4km mostly downhill section out of the Speedway, followed by a long uphill grind to the first time check at 9.7 kilometres. A long descent took the riders back to the entrance of the Speedway, followed by a hard rolling section to the finish line. 

The men rode in overcast and hot conditions, with the humidity at 95 per cent, in air that felt more like soup. They rode in three waves, with Canada's Hugo Houle setting the first benchmark time. Houle was in the hot-seat until Remco Evenepoel (Belgium) in the second wave finally displaced him. 

Rigoberto Urán (Col) then bumped Evenepoel down five riders later, and the Colombian held the top spot until Dumoulin demolished his time by over a minute. Dumoulin, who shocked the cycling world by walking away from the sport before the start of the season, showed that he has regained his competitive fire by setting the fastest splits at every point, catching his 90 second man, Brandon McNulty (USA).

Unfortunately for Dumoulin, Roglič was having the ride of his life, catching both his 90-second man, Kasper Asgreen (Denmark) and three-minute man, Joao Almeida (Portugal).

Just showing how fast Roglič was, despite being caught, Asgreen still finished seventh. Roglič was the only rider to post a sub-56 minute time of 55:04.19 .

The final three riders to start - time trial specialist Küng, world champion Filippo Ganna, and road race silver medalist Van Aert - were never in contention for gold, but all had a chance at the other two medal spots, with Küng finishing fourth, Ganna fifth and Van Aert sixth. 

Both Küng and Ganna were less then two seconds out of the bronze medal time. However, the day was Slovenia's, as they won their first ever gold medal in cycling, and their second medal of these Games after Tadej Pogačar's bronze in the road race.

Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Primož Roglič (Slovenia) 0:55:04
2Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) 0:01:01
3Rohan Dennis (Australia) 0:01:03
4Stefan Küng (Switzerland) 0:01:04
5Filippo Ganna (Italy) 0:01:05
6Wout van Aert (Belgium) 0:01:40
7Kasper Asgreen (Denmark) 0:01:48
8Rigoberto Uran (Colombia) 0:02:14
9Remco Evenepoel (Belgium) 0:02:17
10Patrick Bevin (New Zealand) 0:02:20
11Alberto Bettiol (Italy) 0:02:33
12Geraint Thomas (Great Britain) 0:02:42
13Hugo Houle (Canada) 0:02:52
14Stefan De Bod (South Africa)
15Maximilian Schachmann (Germany) 0:03:29
16João Almeida (Portugal)
17Rémi Cavagna (France) 0:03:34
18Maciej Bodnar (Poland) 0:03:42
19Nikias Arndt (Germany) 0:03:45
20Aleksandr Vlasov (Russian Federation) 0:03:51
21Nelson Oliveira (Portugal) 0:03:55
22Tanel Kangert (Estonia) 0:04:01
23Tobias Foss (Norway) 0:04:47
24Brandon McNulty (United States Of America) 0:04:53
25George Bennett (New Zealand) 0:05:24
26Michael Kukrle (Czech Republic) 0:05:37
27Richie Porte (Australia) 0:05:49
28Nicolas Roche (Ireland) 0:06:18
29Tao Geoghegan Hart (Great Britain) 0:06:40
30Toms Skujins (Latvia) 0:07:00
31Patrick Konrad (Austria)
32Alexey Lutsenko (Kazakhstan) 0:07:17
33Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier (Eritrea) 0:08:18
34Lawson Craddock (United States Of America) 0:08:48
35Saeid Safarzadeh (Iran) 0:10:10
36Azzedine Lagab (Algeria) 0:10:17
37Lukáš Kubiš (Slovakia) 0:11:21
38Ahmad Badreddin Wais (Refugee Olympic Team) 0:13:36
DNFIon Izaguirre Insausti (Spain)

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