Twelve seconds separated Filippo Ganna from third world title in the elite time trial at the cycling World Championships. On the streets of Glasgow, the blue who had worn the rainbow jersey in 2020 and 2021 had to surrender with a minimum gap, after 47 very tough kilometers, to the Belgian Remco Evenepoel. An intense race, which was decided in the last kilometre. Ganna was the protagonist of a spectacular performance, but Evenepoel managed to cross the finish line early, earning the victory with merit. Surprise third place for the 19-year-old British Joshua Tarling.
For Ganna this is the fourth medal of his career in a time trial at the World Championships. Third in 2019, world champion in 2020 and 2021 and today the silver that was missing from his palmarès. “I’ve been in Scotland for two weeks and between track and road I won three medals, I can’t but be happy – admitted the champion from Verbania after the race -. I have nothing to complain about, just to congratulate Remco who went faster today”. No disappointment, therefore, for the blue.
“Gold is better than silver, but I have to say that the performance was there. Others who were aiming for the podium ended up behind – continued the blue -. Combining track and road is difficult, there are many differences and I’m happy with what I’ve done. It’s part of my job and I just think about doing it in the best possible way. The fact that many people are happy with my victories gives me incentive to do better, now I’m heading to the Vuelta”.
Evenepoel made the big difference between first and second intermediate in which he gave 16 seconds to Ganna, going from a delay of four to a lead of 12, which he then kept until the finish. The Belgian is the youngest rider to win a world time trial, at 23 years and 199 days old. The record belonged to Michael Rogers, who in 2003 graduated world champion at 23 years and 293 days. Wout Van Aert was disappointing, only 5/o at the end of the race with a gap of 1’30” from his compatriot. “I’m the first Belgian to win the time trial title – said Evenepoel at the end of the race -, I’m proud for this and for succeeding on such a tough circuit. I’m delighted, I managed great. After the first 20 minutes I still felt fresh and knew I could get the win, even if the last stretch was really difficult. All the efforts that have brought me to this day have been worth it.”
Evenepoel thus obtained his first world time trial title after finishing third in 2021 and 2022 and second in 2019. With this success, the Belgian became the second rider in history to win gold in a World Championship both in the line test (in Wollongong in 2022), and in the time trial. The first to succeed was the Spaniard Abraham Olano, who won the line at Duitama 1995 and the time trial at Valkenburg 1998. “Filippo did a super time trial, an excellent performance which unfortunately wasn’t enough, you have to take your hat off to a phenomenon like Evenepoel”, said Italy coach Marco Velo. Satisfaction also for the performance of the other blue in the match, Mattia Cattaneo, who finished in eighth place.
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