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UCI Road World Championships 2017: Elite Women - Individual Time Trial

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Live coverage of the elite women's time trial at the World Championships in Bergen. 

Welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of the elite women's individual time trial from the UCI Road World Championships in Bergen, Norway.

 

The first rider is just about to head off, it's American Lauren Stephens, one of the country's top time trialists.

Meanwhile, the last rider of the day, her compatriot and defending champion Amber Neben is loosening up with some yoga in the media center.

Anna van der Breggen, one of the top favourites for the race, is on course. The countries are spreading out their options as there could be some rain to come.

 

Currently it's 13 degrees and overcast, pleasant time trialing conditions.

Next off is Selam Amha Gerefiel (Ethiopia) - this country has plenty of top-level men, but their women's programme is still quite new so she's not a big favourite but she'll have lots of fans. The Ethiopian cycling fans are some of the best in the world, as they've shown at the Tour de France.

Lauren Stephens has come through the first check, it came just 5:29 into her ride.

Already Van der Breggen is 26 seconds ahead of Stephens.

Here's the list of riders who have started:
1 Lauren Stephens (United States Of America) 15:35:00
2 Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) 15:36:30
3 Selam Amha Gerefiel (Ethiopia) 15:38:00
4 Varvara Fasoi (Greece) 15:39:30
5 Rotem Gafinovitz (Israel) 15:41:00
6 Qianyu Yang (Hong Kong, China) 15:42:30

The course is quite technical after the first rise, and van der Breggen is showing her skills, slaloming down the road looking smooth and fast.

Of course if the rain does come for the later starters, that descent will be quite tricky with all its twists and turns.

Speaking of rain, the skies have opened up on Van der Breggen - this will make life a bit more difficult for the Dutch rider.

To make it more difficult, it's only raining on part of the course. The women do one long lap of 21km.

Thea Thorson is the first of the home riders on course, heading through the tunnel.

Van der Breggen is on the climb - it's a tough one that kicks up to 9.1%, but it's not Mt. Fløyen that the men must climb. It's fairly short but still painful.

15:58 for Stephens at the first check atop the climb.

Whereas Stephens was out of the saddle climbing, van der Breggen is tucked in the aero bars looking strong going over 31 seconds quicker.

Swiss rider Ramona Forchini is a bit quicker than Stephens at the first check, but we fear no one will touch van der Breggen's splits for some time.

Briton Elinor Barker is out on course now.

Trixi Worrack 1st road Worlds in 1998, when she became Junior Road World Champion - she's got a great ITT, got bet for top 10 #Bergen2017

@PWCycling Tue, 19th Sep 2017 13:56:19

Worrack has just started her effort. She is the current German national champion. 

 

Van der Breggen goes through the third time check and she is well clear of the second rider on the road Lauren Stephens. She's got 55 seconds on the American. 

 

Van der Breggen was almost two kilometres quicker than Stephens in that third section. She's just got the run to the line now. Let's see what time she posts. 

 

Switzerland's Ramona Forchini is second at the first split with Britain's Eleanor Barker in third. It will be interesting to see if they can hold it as there have been several riders who have gone out too quickly and struggled towards the end. 

 

Stephen's crosses the line to set her time of 30:10 but Van der Breggen is not too far behind. She smashes Stephen's time by more than a minute. 

 

It's dry at the start and finish, but there is some rain out on course and we may see a bit more over the next couple of hours. 

 

Forchini has slipped down to sixth at the second check, while Barker has maintained her third place so far. We wait for the next rider over the finish line Gafinovitz.

 

Van der Breggan is unlikely to be toppled for quite some time. She stopped the clock at 29:02.51. It's unusual to see her start so early in a time trial, but with three Dutch riders today, they've been spread across the start order. 

Brenda Santoyo Perez of Mexico is the next rider off the start ramp. 

 

There is a fair amount of climbing in this time trial, but not so much that the riders feel the need to leave their time trial bikes behind. Tomorrow's men's event has thrown up some discussion, with the UCI allowing a bike change mid-race. This means that the bike change and its speed could prove crucial.

 

We spoke to Annemiek van Vleuten in the build-up to the event and she said that she'd prefer to be taking on tomorrow's men's course. She is a favourite for today and for Saturday's road race. 

 

Barker slipped back in that latter part of the course and has finished in fifth place. Demark's Mathieson is sitting in bronze at the moment. Van der Breggen remains the only rider to have gone under the 30-minute mark. 

 

Chloe Dygert is getting ready to start. She could be a wildcard today after her results in the junior event two years ago. She's hardly raced this season so it is a bit of a venture into the unknown. 

 

Here is a quick look at the top 10 as it stands as Lisa Morsenti is about to finish. 

 

1 Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) 29:02.5
2 Lauren Stephens (United States Of America) 30:10.2
3 Pernille Mathiesen (Denmark) 30:52.1
4 Juliette Labous (France) 30:52.2
5 Elinor Barker (Great Britain) 31:00.8
6 Ramona Forchini (Switzerland) 31:37.8
7 Rotem Gafinovitz (Israel) 32:20.3
8 Thea Thorsen (Norway) 32:51.7
9 Varvara Fasoi (Greece) 33:18.7
10 Qianyu Yang (Hong Kong, China) 34:31.1

 

Dygert is now out on the road. Right behind her on the start ramp is Van Vleuten. What can the Dutchwoman do?

 

Worrack comes home in provisional fifth place. That will be a disappointing performance for her. 

 

Van der Breggen is warming down by the hotseat. She looks fairly calm as she watches the other riders come home. Nobody is getting anywhere near her time. 

 

Dygert goes through the first check point just nine seconds down on Van der Breggen. We'll see where she stands at the next time check. 

 

Van Vleuten is going well at the moment. She's just under a second slower than her teammate. The climb will be very interesting. 

 

There is more rain falling on the course, so that could throw a spanner in the works. Let's hope it doesn't impact the riders too much. 

 

Cordon-Ragot has set off and we've got just 13 riders left to start. This is going to get interesting very quickly. 

 

Great Britain reporting that Barker had some issues with her gears during her ride, which meant that she lost time.

 

Van Vleuten is currently under a downpour as she rides, but it's dry at the start and finish line. Some very strange weather out there today. 

 

European silver medallist Ann-Sophie Duyck is about to begin her ride. Hannah Barnes has set off too. 

 

It seems like it's only rained on the Dutch in #Bergen2017 (or it could be we only SEE them getting rained on!) (they're good in the rain!)

@PWCycling Tue, 19th Sep 2017 14:37:18

Chloe Dygert is wrestling with her bike on the climb. Her stark pink overshoes are almost the only thing visible with this grey weather. She's lost a bit of ground in that section and has slipped to fourth as Van Vleuten comes through the check 3.81 seconds down on Van der Breggen. 

 

Considering the downpour she just went through, that's a solid time from Van Vleuten in that section. It's going to be very close between the two Dutch riders at the finish line. Former world champion Linda Villumsen has just set off. 

 

Elisa Longo Borghini is on the start ramp. She told Cyclingnews last week that her target is the top 10 today. 

 

Duyck has stopped the clock with the third quickest time at the first check. She's eight seconds short of Van der Breggen at that point. At the moment, Van der Breggen still looks untouchable at the finish line. 

 

Dygert is coming back. She's made up some time on Van der Breggen in the third section but she's still 25 second back on the Dutch rider. That is by far the closest just yet. 

 

A reminder of how things stand at the finish

 

1 Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands) 29:02.5
2 Lauren Stephens (United States) 30:10.2
3 Pernille Mathiesen (Denmark) 30:52.1
4 Juliette Labous (France) 30:52.2
5 Trixi Worrack (Germany) 30:53.9
6 Elinor Barker (Great Britain) 31:00.8
7 Lisa Morzenti (Italy) 31:21.6
8 Tayler Wiles (United States) 31:36.9
9 Ramona Forchini (Switzerland) 31:37.8
10 Ana Cristina Sanabria Sanchez (Colombia) 31:41.2

 

Van Vleuten storms into the leading position at that third check. She's a whopping 12 seconds up on Van der Breggen. This is some ride by Van Vleuten. 

 

Meanwhile, the last three riders are about to set off. The first of these is Katrin Garfoot, who finished third in Qatar last year. 

 

Last preparations before the start for @LisaBrennauer, @Katrin_Garfoot & @Zabelinskaya. #Bergen2017 https://t.co/nFPeWUYVKp

@UCIWomenCycling Tue, 19th Sep 2017 14:51:28

Last year's champion Amber Neben is down the ramp and we've got all the riders on their way. 

 

Chloe Dygert crosses the line to move into the silver medal spot. She's 37 seconds down on Van der Breggen on the line. 

 

No sooner has Dygert crossed the line does Van Vleuten close on the finish line. She stops the clock at 28:50, 12 seconds quicker than Van der Breggen. The latter does not look very happy to be usurped by her teammate. 

 

This is what that ride has done to the top 10. 

1 Annemiek Van Vleuten (Netherlands) 28:50.3
2 Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands) 29:02.5
3 Chloe Dygert (United States) 29:28.3
4 Lauren Stephens (United States) 30:10.2
5 Pernille Mathiesen (Denmark) 30:52.1
6 Juliette Labous (France) 30:52.2
7 Trixi Worrack (Germany) 30:53.9
8 Elinor Barker (Great Britain) 31:00.8
9 Lisa Morzenti (Italy) 31:21.6
10 Tayler Wiles (United States) 31:36.9

 

Some of the late starters are struggling in the opening section of the course. Van Dijk is down in 20th at the moment while Neben is 27th. They've both given away over 25 seconds in that opening stretch. 

 

Garfoot is doing a bit better though, she was eighth at the opening check at 14 seconds back. 

 

Van Dijk already has a gold in her pocket from these worlds with victory in the team time trial. She was a key component to the Sunweb women taking out the title and she might be feeling those efforts. Van Vleuten said that she was happy not to be riding the TTT last Sunday. 

 

Hannah Barnes putting in a good effort at the moment. She's fifth fastest at the third check at 1:12 behind Van Vleuten. 

 

Cordon-Ragot comes across the finish line in sixth at 1:50. A solid ride from the Frenchwoman. 

 

Garfoot climbing up the standings. She's moved into third at the second check and is still holding Van Vleuten to 18 seconds. 

 

Van Dijk also making up some ground, but will it be enough? She's now in eight place but 42 seconds back. She'll need a very strong finish to get into the medal places. 

 

Meanwhile, Villumsen closing in on a medal spot. She's fourth at the third check at 48 seconds down. 

 

Neben still down in 12th at the second check at over a minute down. It looks highly unlikely that the American will be able to retain her title. 

 

The top 3 remains the same at the moment with Van Vleuten, Van der Breggen and Dygert taking up the medal spots. Moolman Pasio slots into fourth but she's a long way off that third spot. 

 

Villumsen bumps Moolman Pasio out of fourth, but she's still 55 seconds back on Van Vleuten. 

 

Garfoot riding very strong. She's 20 seconds down at the third check and is third in the standings. She looks a solid bet for that bronze medal again. 

 

Van Dijk goes through that check in sixth. She doesn't look like she'll be able to challenge for that third spot after such a difficult start. 

 

Longo Borghini stops the clock 14th fastest at the finish line. She'll be a bit disappointed with that result. 

 

Only five more riders to finish now and it looks highly likely that Van Vleuten will take the gold medal. 

 

Make that four with Brennauer crossing the line in ninth place. 

 

Garfoot is coming into the finish line and she looks like she might have got the bronze. How close will this be?

 

She actually made up time in that last section. She slots into third place just 18 seconds behind Van Vleuten. 

 

Zabelinskaya comes home. She was passed by Garfoot out on course and has lost a boatload of time. She's 2:30 down. 

 

Van Dijk on the run to the line. She's out of medal contention though. Van Vleuten celebrating in the hotseat. 

 

Neben still has to cross the line, but Van Vleuten knows that she has this in the bag. The tears are flowing. 

 

Neben still has a kilometre to go and she's already 20 seconds back on Van Vleuten. 

 

Van Vleuten is full of beans now that she knows she's won. She climbs over the barriers so that she can cross the road and hug her mum. This is a big moment for her. 

 

While Van Dijk might be a bit disappointed with her result, she has made it three riders in the top five for the Dutch. That shows the strength of the squad and will put the fear in their rivals ahead of the road race on Saturday. 

 

Van Vleuten of course has said that she'd like a gold medal in Saturday's road race. In the form she is in, you wouldn't put it past her to do it. She'll have some tough competition in her own team with Van der Breggen and Marianne Vos among the favourites for the road race. 

 

She just missed out on a medal but that was an impressive ride for Dygert considering how little she has ridden on the road this season. 

 

This is how the top 10 shook out in the end. 

 

1 Annemiek Van Vleuten (Netherlands) 0:28:50
2 Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands) 0:00:12
3 Katrin Garfoot (Australia) 0:00:19
4 Chloe Dygert (United States) 0:00:38
5 Ellen Van Dijk (Netherlands) 0:00:52
6 Linda Villumsen (New Zealand) 0:00:56
7 Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (South Africa) 0:01:19
8 Lauren Stephens (United States) 0:01:20
9 Hannah Barnes (Great Britain) 0:01:23
10 Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Denmark) 0:01:34

 

Hannah Barnes another impressive finisher in that group. It was a surprise that Great Britain didn't bring Claire Rose to the Worlds but Barnes has put in a very solid ride today to beat some strong contenders. 

 

You can find full results and a report from today's elite women time trial, right here

 

We have to commend Garfoot on her ride as well today. Third last year on an entirely different type of course and third again today after an up and down season that has been hampered by illness. She will be a dark horse on Saturday along with her teammate Shara Gillow. 

 

And finally.... a few words from the new time trial world champion Annemiek van Vleuten. 

 

"I still cannot believe it. This season I’ve surprised myself with what I can do. To be world champion in the time trial, I never thought I’d be able to do this. This year I started to believe in it, and to be able to finish it off is incredible.

 

"To be an athlete, there are ups and downs, but the downs make the ups even more beautiful, I think. It’s also really beautiful without the crash in Rio, but this makes the story really special.

 

"It was really hard because it started almost pouring rain on the course. I lost some seconds in the descending, I practiced in dry conditions and I had to be really careful. I for sure lost some time there. It was a bit hard, I was thinking ‘oh shit, I’m in top shape and now it’s raining and the weather conditions disturbed my great form’. Even if I lost some seconds, I still focused on what needed to do.

 

"Because I only wanted to know if I was the last one, then it’s good to have the time gaps. I heard on the climb I had almost the same time as Anna, and in the last 5km I heard I was fastest, so then I gave just everything."

 

That is it from us at the women's elite time trial in Bergen. We will be back tomorrow with the men's time trial.You can get the start times for that, here

 

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