Boardman and the Hour

News Flash

Chris Boardman is the new holder of the cycling's one-hour world record. This record is now at 56.375 km. 1.084 km better than Toy Romingers record.

Boardman's Splits

     KM        ROMINGER             BOARDMAN         DIFFERENCE
               (5-11-94)            (6-9-96)
               Bordeaux             Manchester

      1         1'10"5               1'10"8            + 0"3
      5         5'30"2               5'27"             - 3"2
     10        10'53"4              10'47"l            - 6"3
     15        16'17"2              16'05"5            -11"7
     20        21'42"8              21'23"9            -18"9
     25        27' 8"6              26'42"5            -26"1
     30        32'34"9              32'                -34"9
     35        38' 0"4              37'20"7            -39"7
     40        43'26"8              42'41"2            -45"6
     45        48'53"5              48' 1"1            -52"4
     50        54'18"7              53'21"7            -57"

1 hour         55,291 km            56,375 km          + 1,084 km

Boardman gets record

Britain's Chris Boardman smashed the world hour record by more than a kilometre on Friday in Manchester's indoor velodrome.

He covered 56.3759 km in a solo ride against the clock that started nervously and built to a crescendo of triumph as the 3,500 capacity crowd roared him on.

Boardman, aiming for the 1994 mark of 55.291 km set by Switzerland's Tony Rominger in Bordeaux, France, was ahead after the first five kilometres. Maintaining a 56 kph pace, he was 34 seconds faster through 30 km.

At that point he was also well inside the schedule he set when he first took the record from compatriot Graeme Obree in Bordeaux three years ago.

``I was apprehensive and nervous at the start, and I never thought that to beat it by so much was possible,'' said Boardman. ``Perhaps 55.54 but not these figures.

``I had to ease my arms and back during the ride because of my position,'' said Boardman who has adopted Obree's ``Superman'' -- arms outstretched -- riding style.

``I had to adjust my position during tests this week, because I discovered that after 20 kilometres I was cramping in my arms. It seems the shoulder muscles were having to support my body, so I made a change so that the weight was taken by my skeleton. My arms gave me a lot of trouble but it was worth it.''

Among the first to congratulate Boardman was Belgium's Eddy Merckx who set the world hour mark 24 years ago in Mexico.

Last week on the same fast track, the British rider set two world 4,000 metres marks on his way to the world pursuit championship.

The record has made up for a disappointing Tour de France when Boardman was weakened by a viral infection.

``After that I wanted three things. A world title, the world hour record, and now the world time trial crown.''

Next month in Lugano, Switzerland he tries for the treble, buoyed by Friday's performance which left him and his trainer Peter Keen astonished.

``I was shocked by it,'' said Keen. Boardman said: ``I had scheduled to go for 55.750 km and I thought that it would be difficult to maintain that pace.

``This is my personal limit. I don't want to ever do it again, and these figures will make other contenders think twice.

``The crowd had a great effect. Every time they got louder I went faster. I had to be careful not to over-cook it.''

Another Report

Superman Chris Boardman admitted suffering from nerves before annihilating the world hour record here at the Manchester Velodrome on Friday.

It was the 28-year-old Englishman's third world record in 10 days -- all at his local track -- when smashing the highly coveted record to become the first man to break the 56-kilometre barrier.

"I was very apprehensive at the start," admitted Boardman, who rode in his now famous Superman position with just a minor adjustment to his handlebars.

"The saddle was a bit of a problem, and my arms were a real problem in that position. But I think it's worth it for that sort of performance."

Boardman, whose figure of 56.3759km (35.03 miles) added 1.08km to the previous record held for two years by Tony Rominger of Switzerland, was ahead of the clock all the way.

He was just over three seconds ahead at the five-kilometre mark, and increased the margin steadily, beating Rominger by 34.91 seconds at 30 kilometres.

Boardman maintained his speed to the finish. His fastest kilometre of the night was the 56th, which he covered in 1min 1.572sec.

Only last week, he slashed eight seconds off the 4,000 metres pursuit record during the world championships.

Boardman was regaining the world hour mark which he had himself set at Bordeaux in July 1993, when he clocked 52.270km.

It is cycling's equivalent of the mile mark in athletics and has been held by greats such as Belgian Eddy Merckx, Italy's Francesco Moser and Spain's Miguel Indurain.

And Boardman was as good as his word having declared 24 hours earlier that he planned destroy the one-hour world record so emphatically that his rivals will be too scared to challenge his achievement.

"If all goes to plan I will put the record at such a level that the top riders will have to think long and hard before attempting to break it," said the Liverpool-based rider.

One Hour Record Evolution

 Oct 1972 (Mexico City) Eddy Merckx (Belgium)         49.431 km
 Jan 1984 (Mexico City) Francesco Moser (Italy)       50.808
 Jan 1984 (Mexico City) Moser                         51.151
 Jul 1993 (Hamar, Norway) Graeme Obree (Britain)      51.596
 Jul 1993 (Bordeaux, France) Chris Boardman (Britain) 52.270
 Apr 1994 (Bordeaux) Obree                            52.713
 Sep 1994 (Bordeaux) Miguel Indurain (Spain)          53.040
 Oct 1994 (Bordeaux) Tony Rominger (Switzerland)      53.832
 Oct 1994 (Bordeaux) Rominger                         55.291
 Sep 1996 (Manchester, England) Boardman              56.3759

Another History

Date Rider Nat. Velodrome Distance Margin 11-05-1893 Henri DESGRANGE Fra Paris 35,325 +-0 m 31-10-1894 Jules DUBOIS Fra Paris 38,220 + 2.895 30-07-1897 Oscar VAN DEN EYNDE Bel Paris 39,240 + 1.020 03-07-1898 Willie HAMILTON Usa Denver 40,781 + 1.541 24-08-1905 Lucien PETIT BRETON Fra Paris 41,110 + 329 20-06-1907 Marcel BERTHET Fra Paris 41,520 + 410 22-08-1912 Oscar EGG Sch Paris 42,122 + 602 07-08-1913 Marcel BERTHET Fra Paris 42,741 + 619 21-08-1913 Oscar EGG Sch Paris 43,525 + 784 20-09-1913 Marcel BERTHET Fra Paris 43,775 + 250 18-08-1914 Oscar EGG Sch Paris 44,247 + 472 25-08-1933 Jan VAN HOUT Ned Paris 44,588 + 341 28-09-1933 Maurice RICHARD Fra Saint Trond 44,777 + 189 31-10-1935 Giuseppe OLMO Ita Milano 45,090 + 313 14-10-1936 Maurice RICHARD Fra Milano 45,325 + 235 29-09-1937 Frans SLAATS Ned Milano 45,485 + 160 03-11-1937 Maurice ARCHAMBAUD Fra Milano 45,767 + 282 07-11-1942 Fausto COPPI Ita Milano 45,798 + 31 29-06-1956 Jacques ANQUETIL Fra Milano 46,159 + 361 19-09-1956 Ercole BALDINI Ita Milano 46,394 + 235 18-09-1957 Roger RIVIERE Fra Milano 46,923 + 529 23-09-1959 Roger RIVIERE Fra Milano 47,347 + 424 30-10-1967 Ferdinand BRACKE Bel Roma 48,093 + 746 10-10-1968 Ole RITTER Den Mexico City 48,653 + 560 25-10-1972 Eddy MERCKX Bel Mexico City 49,432 + 779 19-01-1984 Francesco MOSER Ita Mexico City 50,808 + 1.376 23-01-1984 Francesco MOSER Ita Mexico City 51,151 + 343 17-07-1993 Graeme OBREE Gbr Hamar 51,596 + 445 23-07-1993 Chris BOARDMAN Gbr Bordeaux 52,270 + 674 27-04-1994 Graeme OBREE Gbr Bordeaux 52,713 + 433 02-09-1994 Miguel INDURAIN Spa Bordeaux 53,040 + 327 22-10-1994 Tony ROMINGER Sch Bordeaux 53,832 + 792 05-11-1994 Tony ROMINGER Sch Bordeaux 55,291 + 1.459 07-09-1996 Chris BOARDMAN Gbr Manchester 56,375 + 1.084