Some News from the Worlds - October 6
Miguel Indurain is firming as favourite for the Men's Road Race on Sunday. By
winning his first world championship in the ITT he is the firm Road Race bet
and there are also heightened expectations of a successful bid for the world
hour record in Colombia the following week.
On a very hilly and wind-blown ITT course from Paipa to Tunja, Miguel road the
43 kms at an average speed of 46.18 km/h. He defeated fellow Spaniard, Abraham
Olano by 48.7 seconds. Olano had only a week to acclimatise to the 2500 to 2800
metre altitude after finishing second in the Tour of Spain.
The bronze was won by a German amateur, Uwe Peschel who was at 2 mins 3 secs.
Most of the field were trying to gain Olympic Games qualifying berths, not
having a chance to be competitive against Miguel.
Brett Denniss the Australian finished 11th at 4 m 36 secs to Indurain coming
from 18th at the 21 km mark. His top 15 finish gives Australia a place in the
Olympic ITT next year in Atlanta.
Deane Rogers was Australia's next best rider coming 16th at 4 m 52. He was the
1994 World Junior ITT Champion.
Indurain compared his victory to a "very good stage in a stage race", alluding
to this three goals this week of ITT, road race and the world hour record.
"This was an important win for me, but not the most important."
Kathy Watt has had a lean time since she won Commonwealth Gold in Canada last
year. To secure her Olympic credibility a major worldwide result was needed.
The women's ITT was over a hilly 26 km course and was one by Jeannie Longo. For
most of the event, Kathy Watt had the fastest time. After finishing she had to
wait 26 minutes before knowing her medal placing. She claims to be getting back
to top form after and 8 month battle to shake of an achilles tendon injury.
She said "The Olympics are definately my main focus. I'm really happy with how
I went today. And hopefully from now on in I can keep building on from there to
get stronger and stronger."
One incentive for Watt was that her rival in the 1992 Olympic pursuit final,
Petra Rossner went off in front of her in the ITT. "Certainly there was a lot
of good incentive for me to catch her." Watt said referring to the German who
beat her out of the 1992 pursuit gold.
Watt thinks the road race is a tough course and will make the even a race of
attrition rather than an attacking race. She said "I have improved my climbing
and the main hill in the race should help me there. But i believe that with the
altitude it will be more of a race where riders are eliminated."