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75th World Championships - CM
Varese, Italy, September 23-28, 2008
Race 1 - September 23: Under 23 men's time trial, 33.55km
Malori brings in first gold for host
Meyer scores bronze for Australia
By Bjorn Haake, with additional reporting from Gregor Brown in Varese
Adriano Malori brought home the first gold medal for the host nation Italy. Malori won the U23 time trial with a time of 41:35.98, almost one minute ahead of Germany's Patrick Gretsch. Australian Cameron Meyer scored the bronze medal, ahead of Switzerland's Marcel Wyss.
Malori, the reigning European Champion, was the last rider to start, but not the last to finish. He passed his 90-second man, Portugal's Rui Costa, shortly before the finish. This was all the more outstanding as Costa finished inside the top 10, in eighth place.
Malori set the best times at every intermediate check. The emotional Italian shed tears of joy during the Italian national anthem. "I am very happy with the jersey. It is incredible for my career, and it is special because it is in Italy."
Malori was less than a second ahead of Gretsch at the first check, but started to pull away from there. The key point for him was after the uphill section. "My director told me through the radio that I was going well when I arrived at the top of the climb. He said I had a good gap and that was a good feeling and good for my morale."
Malori also praised the equipment that he and the team chose. "I thought the gearing I used worked very well and that also helped my morale." Malori dedicated his victory to teammate Marco Coledan. "He is my friend." Coledan crashed in a training session and had to be transferred to hospital with severe injuries.
Gretsch crashes to the silver medal
The course included a tunnel, but it was just afterwards when the most tricky section of the parcours was reached. As the riders emerged from the darkness into the bright sun light, several riders crashed. One of them was Gretsch. "I crashed three kilometres from the finish, at the right hand turn after the tunnel. It cost me a lot of time."
It is doubtful Gretsch lost the 49 seconds with which he trailed in the end, so the German was satisfied with his result. "I am very happy with my ride and very happy to be on the podium."
He still thought the crash to be bizarre, as the TV motorbike also came down on him. "The motorbike also crashed. It was not its fault [that I crashed]. When I was down the motorbike went over me. It is hard to believe!" Gretsch had a deep flesh wound, open to the bone on his ankle. Russian Dmitry Sokolov crashed at almost exactly the same spot. In his case, the TV camera did not crash and was able to transmit the flying Russian to the TV viewers.
Meyer gets the bronze medal
Meyer started early and set the best intermediate times. He took over the hot chair from Colombian Jaime Suaza, before finally being relegated to the third chair at the end. Nonetheless, Meyer liked getting at least one of the three chairs where the top riders are placed until the event is over. "I am happy with the result. In Championships it is always hard to get a medal."
Meyer found the chosen parcours pretty difficult. "I was excited about the race, though it was a very hard circuit." Given the tough course and the combative competition the winner averaged over 48 km/h the balance was good for the Australian. "To be able to get onto the podium makes me very happy."
Meyer said it was pretty special to be riding in the event for Australia with his brother Travis. "Having both of us selected in the Australian team is a big deal in itself and then for me to medal and him to finish in the top twenty is a good day indeed. The folks at home will be buzzing for sure." Travis Meyer finished in 19th place, 1:58.08 back.
Cameron Meyer was happy to finally not land outside the top three. "I reckon I've broken the [fourth place] voodoo that was on me and hopefully there are many more World Championships and many more medals to come now." Meyer had finished fourth in the points race in the Olympic Games in Beijing, as well as in the past two track World Championships.
Switzerland's Marcel Wyss may have been happy with a fourth place going into the race, but missing a medal by seven seconds left a bit disappointed, too.
Three riders were virtually tied in time. Stefano Borchi in fifth place added to the good result of the Italian team. Peter Stetina of the USA came home in sixth place, while Kristjan Koren brought home a good result for Slovenia. All were 1:24 back, with the hundredths of seconds deciding their respective placings.
German Under 23 time trial champion Andreas Henig ended the day in ninth place, 1:32.71 behind the winner. New Zealand's Clinton Avery came home in 41st (3:18.13), one place ahead of Tejay Van Garderen (3:21.06).
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Riccardo Scanferla
Images by Roberto Bettini/www.bettiniphoto.net
Images by Sirotti/www.sirotti.it
1 Adriano Malori (Italy) 41.35.98 (48.389 km/h) 2 Patrick Gretsch (Germany) 0.49.67 3 Cameron Meyer (Australia) 1.04.36 4 Marcel Wyss (Switzerland) 1.11.56 5 Stefano Borchi (Italy) 1.24.31 6 Peter Stetina (United States Of America) 1.24.58 7 Kristjan Koren (Slovenia) 1.24.83 8 Rui Costa (Portugal) 1.26.83 9 Andreas Henig (Germany) 1.32.71 10 Artem Ovechkin (Russian Federation) 1.37.51 11 Jaime Suaza (Colombia) 1.40.44 12 Tony Gallopin (France) 1.48.20 13 Mykhaylo Kononenko (Ukraine) 1.48.96 14 Fabio Andres Duarte Arevalo (Colombia) 1.49.12 15 Johan Lindgren (Sweden) 1.49.54 16 Daniel Kreutzfeldt (Denmark) 1.51.55 17 Rafael Serrano Fernandez (Spain) 1.54.40 18 Dennis Van Winden (Netherlands) 1.55.63 19 Travis Meyer (Australia) 1.58.08 20 David Veilleux (Canada) 2.08.72 21 Nicolas Boisson (France) 2.11.58 22 Gatis Smukulis (Latvia) 2.12.81 23 Jan Ghyselinck (Belgium) 2.21.56 24 Gert Joeaar (Estonia) 2.23.28 25 Andrey Amador Bikkazakova (Costa Rica) 2.25.44 26 Ramunas Navardauskas (Lithuania) 2.26.78 27 Siarhei Papok (Belarus) 2.27.13 28 Ervin Korts-Laur (Estonia) 2.30.29 29 Matthias Brandle (Austria) 2.32.62 30 Michael Faerk Christensen (Denmark) 2.38.64 31 Martin Hacecky (Czech Republic) 2.40.52 32 Dmitry Sokolov (Russian Federation) 2.44.38 33 Russell Hampton (Great Britain) 2.48.98 34 Arturo Mora Ortiz (Spain) 2.50.89 35 Andrei Krasilnikau (Belarus) 2.53.37 36 Alex Dowsett (Great Britain) 2.59.17 37 Martijn Keizer (Netherlands) 3.03.33 38 Gabor Fejes (Hungary) 3.06.48 39 Eric Boily (Canada) 3.09.76 40 Gideoni Monteiro (Brazil) 3.11.63 41 Clinton Avery (New Zealand) 3.18.13 42 Tejay Van Garderen (United States Of America) ´ 3.21.06 43 Temur Mukhamedov (Uzbekistan) 3.23.94 44 MartinKostelnicak (Slovakia) 3.44.24 45 Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kazakhstan) 3.48.86 46 Vitor Rodrigues (Portugal) 3.53.67 47 MartinsTrautmanis (Latvia) 4.26.25 48 Nicolas Schnyder (Switzerland) 4.30.91 49 Vadim Izotov (Kazakhstan) 4.33.59 50 Jarlinson Pantano Gomez (Colombia) 4.41.89 51 Joze Jovanov (Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) 5.02.42 52 Roman Jose Mastrangelo (Argentina) 5.06.06 53 Sergio Daniel Godoy (Argentina) 5.14.26 54 Abdelkader Belmokhtar (Algeria) 5.19.44 55 Jakub Kratochvila (Czech Republic) 5.29.97 56 Victor Mironov (Republic of Moldova) 5.56.70 57 Jakub Novak (Slovakia) 6.08.32 58 Evaldas Siskevicius (Lithuania) 6.15.64 59 Muhammad Fauzan Ahmad Lutfi (Malaysia) 7.13.50 60 Tamas Iszkadi (Hungary) 8.27.62 DNF Sergiu Cioban (Republic of Moldova) DNF Ole Jorgen Jensen (Norway) DNS Hossein Nateghi (Islamic Republic of Iran) DNS Marco Coledan (Italy)