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Van der Breggen wins time trial title at Imola World Championships

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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Anna Van Der Breggen of The Netherlands during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Anna Van Der Breggen of The Netherlands (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Podium Marlen Reusser of Switzerland Silver medal Anna Van Der Breggen of The Netherlands World Champion Jersey Gold medal Ellen Van Dijk of The Netherlands Bronze Medal Celebration Mask during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Time Trial World Championship podium for elite women (l to r): Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) - silver, Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) - gold, Ellen van Dijk (Netherlands) - bronze (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 Women Elite Time Trial Imola Imola 317 km 24092020 Anna Van Der Breggen Netherlands photo Roberto BettiniBettiniPhoto2020

European TT champion Anna van der Breggen wins world championship in Imola (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Podium Marlen Reusser of Switzerland Silver medal Anna Van Der Breggen of The Netherlands World Champion Jersey Gold medal Ellen Van Dijk of The Netherlands Bronze Medal Celebration Mask during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

Time Trial World Championship podium for elite women (l to r): Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) - second, Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) - first, Ellen van Dijk (Netherlands) - third (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Pdium Marlen Reusser of Switzerland Silver medal Ellen Van Dijk of The Netherlands Bronze medal Celebration Social distance Mask Covid safety measures during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

Elbow bumps the new normal on the podium at world championships in 2020 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands) - photo Vincent Kalut/PN/BettiniPhoto©2020

2020 TT world title taken by Anna van der Breggen (NED) (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Elizabeth Banks of The United Kingdom during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

Lizzy Banks of Great Britain (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Anna Van der Breggen (Netherlands) - photo Dario Belingheri/BettiniPhoto©2020

Anna van der Breggen (NED) averaged 47.2 km/h for the 31.7km ride to gold (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Mikayla Harvey of New Zealand during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

UCI Road World Championships use part of motorcar circuit on ITT course in Imola (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Grace Brown of Australia during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Grace Brown of Australia averaged 45.99 km/h in TT for best time midway through race (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Agusta Bjornsdottir of Iceland during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Agusta Bjornsdottir of Iceland on course (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Teniel Campbell of Trinidad And Tobago during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Teniel Campbell of Trinidad And Tobago on 31.7km course (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Audrey CordonRagot of France during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Audrey Cordon-Ragot of France (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Emma Norsgaard Jorgensen of Denmark during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Emma Norsgaard Jorgensen of Denmark in Imola (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Ann Sophie Duyck of Belgium during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Ann Sophie Duyck of Belgium in 2020 Worlds ITT (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Lauren Stephens of The United States during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

Lauren Stephens of USA on motorcar circuit (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Chloe Dygert of The United States during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Chloe Dygert of USA is the defending champion in ITT (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Lisa Brennauer of Germany during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Lisa Brennauer of Germany (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Marlen Reusser of Switzerland during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Marlen Reusser of Switzerland (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Amber Neben of The United States vduring the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Amber Neben of the United States (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Chloe Dygert of The United States Crash Injury Accident Doctors Red cross during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

American Chloe Dygert is treated by medical team after crashing on TT course at Worlds (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Chloe Dygert of The United States Crash Injury Accident Doctors Red cross Ambulance during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Defending TT world champion Chloe Dygert (USA) was taken to local hospital after she lost control of her bike through a right-hand bend on a downhill and crashed over the road side barriers (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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IMOLA ITALY SEPTEMBER 24 Anna Van Der Breggen of The Netherlands Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari during the 93rd UCI Road World Championships 2020 Women Elite Individual Time Trial a 317km stage from Imola to Imola ITT ImolaEr2020 Imola2020 on September 24 2020 in Imola Italy Photo by Bas CzerwinskiGetty Images

New TT World Champion Anna van der Breggen on final section of course at Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Anna Van Der Breggen (Netherlands) - photo Roberto Bettini/BettiniPhoto©2020

Anna van der Breggen of The Netherlands in final section of TT (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 Women Elite Time Trial Imola Imola 317 km 24092020 Lisa Brennauer Germany photo Roberto BettiniBettiniPhoto2020

Lisa Brennauer of Germany finished fourth at TT Thursday (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 Women Elite Time Trial Imola Imola 317 km 24092020 Ellen Van Dijk Netherlands photo Roberto BettiniBettiniPhoto2020

Ellen van Kijk, the 2013 world champion in the TT, finished third for The Netherlands (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Grace Brown (Australia) - photo Roberto Bettini/BettiniPhoto©2020

Australia's Grace Brown had a great ride and finished fifth (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) - photo Dario Belingheri/BettiniPhoto©2020

Marlen Reusser, a two-time Swiss TT champion, was second best on Thursday (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 Women Elite Time Trial Imola Imola 317 km 24092020 Chloe Dygert United States Of America photo Ilario BiondiBettiniPhoto2020

Defending TT World Champion Chloe Dygert (USA) before her start at Imola (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Chloe Dygert (USA) - photo Dion Kerckhoffs/CV/BettiniPhoto©2020

On the 31.7km TT course, Chloe Dygert (USA) was in the lead at the intermediate sprint check (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 - Women Elite Time Trial - Imola - Imola 31,7 km - 24/09/2020 - Vittoria Bussi (Italy) - photo Davy Rietbergen/CV/BettiniPhoto©2020

Italian Vittoria Bussi finished 10th in the TT (Image credit: Bettini Image)
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Road World Championships Imola 2020 Women Elite Time Trial Imola Imola 317 km 24092020 Marco Selleri ITA photo Dario BelingheriBettiniPhoto2020

General Manager of Imola world championships at elite women's TT Marco Selleri (Image credit: Bettini Image)

Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) claimed her first world title in the elite women's time trial at the UCI Road World Championships in Imola, after placing second in the event on four previous occasions. Van der Breggen covered the 31.7km route in a winning time of 40:20 to beat silver medallist Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) by 15 seconds and bronze medallist Ellen van Dijk (Netherlands) by 31 seconds.

"Getting second for many years, I would say that I really can't believe it yet," van der Breggen said. "I had no idea, I just said to Danny Stam, my director in the car, 'don't give me any time splits. It doesn't matter, I just want to go as fast as possible to the finish line'. I only heard on the finish line that I won. It's incredible and I'm really happy."

Defending champion and pre-race favourite Chloe Dygert (USA) was on track to secure her second consecutive world title in the event but crashed over a guard rail and down a steep embankment on the return to the finish line at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola. She was treated by medical staff before being transferred by ambulance to the hospital in Imola. The extent of her injuries have not been confirmed, however, USA Cycling confirmed that Dygert remained conscious.

How it unfolded

The elite women's time trial kicked off the four days of racing with a 31.7km flat contest held along an out-and-back circuit that started and finished at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola.

The women were expected to produce faster times along the flat, non-technical course and smooth tarmac surface, however, a block headwind made times slower than usual at roughly 31kph, on the way out to the first checkpoint, but upwards of 50kph on the return.

Emma Cecilie Norsgaard Jorgensen of Denmark was the fastest of the early starters racing through the 14.9km checkpoint in 21:21 and 16 seconds faster than Lizzie Banks (Great Britain) and 33 seconds faster than Mikayla Harvey (New Zealand).

Amber Joseph of Barbados was the first rider off the starting ramp and the first to finish, covering the distance in a time of 50:36, that was surpassed by Valeriya Kononenko (Ukraine), who finished with 43:35, and then again by Harvey with a time of 42:53.

Harvey's fastest time didn't last long as Banks finished in 42:43, a time that was overtaken by Jorgensen, who finished over a full minute faster with a time of 41:42 and an average speed of 44kph.

Audrey Cordon Ragot (France) and Mieke Kroger (Germany) finished with quick times that moved them both briefly into second and third place, but 30 seconds slower than Jorgensen.

The times started getting faster and faster as the time trial progressed with Lauren Stephens (USA) racing through at 21:06, overtaken by Grace Brown (Australia) with 20:35 at the intermediate check.

Amber Neben, who won the world title in the time trial in 2008 at Varese and in 2016 on a flat course in Doha, and is competing in her 16th World Championships, took the starting ramp but she covered the first half of the time trial 13 seconds slower than Brown.

Brown was the first rider to take over the hot seat from Jorgensen, as she stormed through the finish line 41:21 to set a new benchmark. It didn't last long, though, as van Dijk finished 29 seconds faster and was the first rider to go over 46kph.

Teniel Campbell (Trinidad and Tobago) covered the course in 45:52. She was aiming for a strong time trial performance on the original course in Switzerland, where she got her start in European racing with the WCC team at the World Cycling Centre.

The favourites were the last to start with Lisa Brennauer (Germany) and Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) setting faster intermediate checkpoints. Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) was searching for her first world title in the discipline after earning the silver medal on four occasions; 2015 in Richmond, 2017 in Bergen, 2018 in Innsbruck where she won the elite women's road race world title, and last year in Yorkshire. However, van der Breggen's intermediate checkpoint was slower than Reusser.

The USA fielded three riders in the time trial and after Stephens and Neben started earlier, then defending champion  Dygert was the last to roll off the starting ramp kitted in the Team USA skinsuit and tall pink socks and shoe covers, and racing on a team-issued Felt DA time trial bike.

Dygert pushed an enormous gear over the flat roads and smashed through the intermediate time check at an astonishing 19:35, nearly half a minute faster than Reusser. However, just as she appeared to be headed for her second world title, Dygert crashed through a righthand bend on a downhill and went over the roadside barriers, with video footage showing her going over the barriers and her bike and onto the other side into a grassy ravine, and was not able to complete the event.

Reusser then moved into the fastest time, overtaking Van Dijk, with a finish time of 40:35. The last rider to finish was Van der Breggen, who set a  blistering time of 40:20, 15 seconds faster than Reusser, with an average speed of 47kph to take the rainbow jersey.

Full Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Anna van der Breggen (Netherlands) 0:40:20
2Marlen Reusser (Switzerland) 0:00:16
3Ellen van Dijk (Netherlands) 0:00:31
4Lisa Brennauer (Germany) 0:00:45
5Grace Brown (Australia) 0:01:01
6Amber Neben (United States Of America) 0:01:20
7Emma Norsgaard (Denmark) 0:01:22
8Mieke Kroger (Germany) 0:01:31
9Lauren Stephens (United States Of America) 0:01:43
10Vittoria Bussi (Italy) 0:01:47
11Audrey Cordon Ragot (France) 0:01:54
12Georgia Williams (New Zealand) 0:02:17
13Eugenia Bujak (Slovenia) 0:02:20
14Anna Plichta (Poland) 0:02:21
15Elizabeth Banks (Great Britain) 0:02:24
16Alena Amialiusik (Belarus) 0:02:29
17Juliette Labous (France) 0:02:30
18Anna Kiesenhofer (Austria) 0:02:31
19Alice Barnes (Great Britain) 0:02:33
20Mikayla Harvey (New Zealand) 0:02:34
21Leah Kirchmann (Canada) 0:02:35
22Karol-ann Canuel (Canada) 0:02:47
23Arlenis Sierra Canadilla (Cuba) 0:02:47
24Lisa Norden (Sweden) 0:02:53
25Vittoria Guazzini (Italy) 0:02:56
26Valeriya Kononenko (Ukraine) 0:03:15
27Aigul Gareeva (Russian Federation) 0:03:38
28Claire Faber (Luxembourg) 0:03:46
29Dana Rozlapa (Latvia) 0:03:48
30Rotem Gafinovitz (Israel) 0:03:52
31Eri Yonamine (Japan) 0:04:08
32Pernille Mathiesen (Denmark) 0:04:22
33Sara van de Vel (Belgium) 0:04:24
34Ann-sophie Duyck (Belgium) 0:04:46
35Olga Shekel (Ukraine) 0:04:54
36Teniel Campbell (Trinidad & Tabago) 0:05:33
37Lourdes Oyarbide Jimenez (Spain) 0:05:45
38Catalina Soto Campos (Chile) 0:05:54
39Sara Martin Martin (Spain) 0:06:31
40Fernanda Yapura (Argentina) 0:06:35
41Tereza Korvasova (Czech Republic) 0:07:24
42Agusta Bjornsdottir (Iceland) 0:07:25
43Jarmila Machacova (Czech Republic) 0:07:26
44Kerry Jonker (South Africa) 0:07:49
45Akvile Gedraityte (Lithuania) 0:08:59
46Margret Palsdottir (Iceland) 0:09:39
47Amber Joseph (Barbados) 0:10:16
48Eyeru Tesfoam Gebru (Ethiopia) 0:11:00
49Siham Es-saddy (Morocco) 0:14:08
DNSOlga Zabelinskaya (Uzbekistan)
DNFChloe Dygert (United States of America)

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