WORLDS’17 Men’s ITT: Dominant Dumoulin!

World’s TT Race Report: Big Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) is a dominant winner; Primoz Roglic (Slovenia) takes silver and confirms against the watch; Chris (Dog) Froome (GB) takes bronze on an ‘interesting’ parcours in beautiful Bergen.

With hindsight it’s difficult to see the result being that much different whatever the course. . .

Refreshing change and something different?
‘Novelty race?’

Over a mere 18 miles with a two mile hill climb stuck on the end – I kinda go for the latter. The World Time Trial Championship should be 45 to 55 kilometers and for the ‘chronomen’ not specced to entice a specific rider – i.e. Christopher Froome. Prior to the finishing wall the course is technical with a bit of everything – including cobbles, road furniture, a tunnel and tight bends. The finishing ‘wall’ is a beast with much controversy about it’s inclusion – and that’s before we mention the red carpet ‘change zone’ so as riders can change from their TT bikes to a much lighter road bike for the climb.

Because of the mini circuit just before the ‘wall’ the riders have to go in ‘waves.’ Kazakh Alexey Lutsenko was first to make the bike change; and making a real horse’s derriere of the maneuver. To my mind, this only adds to the ‘novelty’ race tag – farcical.

Bike change for Jasha Sutterlin

Huge crowds on the climb though as Lutsenko stops the clock on 47:45 – nice view from up there. . .
Denmark’s omnium specialist Lasse Norman Hansen decides to brave the climb on his TT iron – good luck, son. Germany’s Jasha Sutterlin misses Lutsenko’s time as big Belgian Laurens De Plus eschews a change but takes advantage of the smooth ‘change’ carpet as he hurtles into the climb. De Plus looks as good on the climb as a man can on a TT bike up a steep climb on wet roads – and he goes top with 47:16 and 39.3 kph.

The sun is drying the roads now as US champion Joey Rosskopf keeps the tempo high over the cobbles; he looks very tidy but he’s well off the pace at the 11K check. Former World Road Race Champion, Rui Costa of Portugal isn’t melting the tar either on this day. But early times aren’t such a big deal on this course where so much time can be won or lost on the final hill.

21st place for Belgiums Laurens De Plus

Quick-Stepper De Plus looks comfy in the hot seat; make the most of it, Dude. Russia’s Alex Evtushenko is setting some nice times on that Canyon – but let’s see how he copes with the ramp. Costa sticks with his lo pro for the climb; Rosskopf changes though. . .

After pummeling a big gear on the flat the change of cadence and machine is going to be savage on the legs. Slovenia’s Jan Tratnik goes top at the foot of the climb and sticks with his orange Guerciotti TT bike for the final torture; he won his home tour, this year so he can get up them hills. Evtushenko is battling hard on the Canyon but the watch says he’s slipping away from De Plus’s time.

Niko Arndt for Germany is fastest so far on the flat but he’s a big lad and will suffer on the 10% grade.
There are huge crowds on the hardest parts of the climb without too many idiots getting in the way – as Tratnik goes top by 51 seconds. Nice ride, sir – 46:24. Arndt is battling with the climb but that big frame of his isn’t best designed for this gig as he fights that Giant up the narrow ribbon of tar through a sea of Norwegian flags. Arndt finishes, that climb hurt him; Tratnik is still way clear.

Belgium’s Yves Lampaert is on a charge, smooth, flat backed, a recent Vuelta stage winner and current Belgian Time Trial Champion he could well be the new leader – his cadence is good; there’ll be few 58 rings on show here. He’s fastest through all the early checks. Bergen Harbor looks great in the sunshine – but just don’t try to buy a beer. . .

Lampaert charges into the climb on the Shiv just a little slower than Arndt – but that’ll change on the ascent. Former Giro TT winner, Ignatas Konovalovas for Lithuania does change bikes. Lampaert looks to be taking time out of Tratnik, we’ll know at the top. Konovalovas is climbing nicely for a big man, legs whirling on that Lapierre; ahead of him Lampaert doesn’t seem to be going as well as Tratnik.

Bike change for Wilco Kelderman worked well

Wilco Kelderman takes to the stage; he’ll still be smarting from losing his podium spot to Contador on the penultimate stage of the Vuelta. Lampaert is struggling now; too much speed, too soon – he’s not paced it properly and Tratnik looks comfy in that hot seat as Konovalovas misses the mark too.

Next wave and Columbian TT champion, Jarlinson Pantano looks to be pacing it for the climb at the end; but he’s given an awful lot of time away – he’s left much of his legs in the Vuelta, I fear. Kelderman looks to have adopted the same strategy but isn’t giving nearly as much time away early.

Ireland’s Nico Roche is off and running as Boasson-Hagen readies himself; clip-on bars on the Cervelo for the Home Boy so no bike change, looks like a Lightweight disc to us. Andrey Grivko (Ukraina) is fast to the foot of the hill – but he’s a big boy. . . Kelderman changes bikes and is dancing on the pedals within meters.

Boasson-Hagen is mobile to huge roars of approval and European Champion, Belgian Victor Campenaerts is next on the ramp. Pantano has hemorrhaged huge amounts of time at the foot of the climb, hard to see that getting pulled back. Kelderman is looking very tidy on the climb – but those big thighs of Grivko aren’t made for this kind of effort.

Sky’s Gianni Moscon rolls now; the Pinarello is red, white and green – nice touch for the Italian TT Champion. There’s more body movement from Kelderman as gets near the summit but still he urges that Giant onwards and upwards – at the line he tops Tratnik by nine seconds. That hot seat will be nice and warm for him.

Former World Champion, Belarusian Vasil Kiryienka takes the first corner gingerly on that Bolide. Kiry’s cadence is low, solid as a rock and the gear is huge – but it’ll be hard for him to find the cadence for the final ramp. Boasson-Hagen gets a hero’s welcome round the course but he’s riding within himself – Lampaert’s exploding on the climb won’t have gone unnoticed.

Nelson Oliveira missed out on a medal by 8 seconds

Moscon is quick out of the blocks, can he sustain it? Portugal’s Nelson Oliveira is riding nicely at the intermediates but the finishing hill is everything, today. Going out fast and ‘hanging on’ is not an option on this day, there has to be gas in the tank for those last cruel kilometers to those beautiful views over Bergen.

Frenchman Alexis Gougeard is riding strongly and so too are Moscon and Kiry with little between them. Roche pedals his Time Machine into the hill as we wait for the last wave and top seeds. Boasson-Hagen on the climb but he’s surrendered too much time on the flat. Does Campanaerts have anything for the climb – he changes bikes and spins into the ramp.

Luxemburger Bob Jungels

Oliveira is going well – he changes too, a horrible one, seconds lost there but is charging the early part of the climb. Tejay van Garderen for the US of A on the ramp, he popped in the TTT remember. Gougeard is quick, changes bikes, not a bad one, he was 11th last year – but it’s all down to the climb. Moscon blasts in to the hill, fastest, no bike change. Roche finishes, not a bad ride but Kelderman still reigns up there.

Jungels goes next – he’s a big lad for this parcours. Gougeard doesn’t look as sweet on the climb but he could be higher geared? Kiry is level with Moscon – no bike change, and it’s Sky Italy v. Sky Belarus.
Polish Bison Bodnar hits the deck on the first bend – ouch! As Boasson-Hagen misses the mark at the other end of the course.

Not Tony Martin’s day

Gougeard looks to be struggling now, those bends are hurting. Oliveira goes top as Gougeard endures a chain drop disaster further down the hill – he’s off the bike, it’s over, he’s 25 seconds back at the end – tragic. Moscon misses out to Oliveira, just as Rohan Dennis (Oz) goes then Chris Froome (Monaco), Big Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) then Tony Martin (Germany) – this is it, all the ‘Bigs’ are over the tar.
Kiry is on a ‘death gear,’ big ring, rock solid – he must be hurting so much.

Oliveira continues to lead for Portugal as Kiry misses out by less than a second with Moscon third – all on the same second. Meanwhile, lower down in Bergen, Primoz Roglic of Slovenia is flying; he’s won the TT’s in Romandie and ZLM this year. He sails past Bodnar. Zakarin for Russia is going well, Dennis is flying; Dumoulin is holding just a little back whilst Froome seems to be giving too much away – but it’s early. . .

Bodnar re-passes Roglic, too much too soon for the ex-ski jumper? Dumoulin, big and strong as usual – 10 seconds up on Dennis is the latest word. Tony Martin nicks a few hundredths by riding over the ‘change’ carpet. Here comes the rain!

Froome has given away more time but he’s still within the parameters of saving the day on the climb. Dumoulin continues to lead from Dennis as the day gets murkier by the minute. Dennis’s knee is bleeding – he’s been on the deck and is way back now; end of story. Martin’s off the pace, his head has never been in this one. Castroviejo is off the pace too.

Froome doesn’t look comfortable BUT the watch tells a story that he’s coming back as he splashes through ever-bigger puddles. Tejay on the climb, no bike change. . . Zakarin, gingerly on the wet cobbles, no bike change for him either. Dumoulin blasts it – half-a-minute and more up on the field. Roglic changes bikes; he looks good, attacking the bends on that lovely Bianchi as he drops the camera moto.

Primoz Roglic was on a flyer

Froome looks as horrible as ever on the bike but we need to see what the watches say – they don’t care about style. No bike change for Castroviejo. Straight into the climb on the Bolide for Froome Dog. And Dumoulin isn’t so far behind Froome; The Dog doesn’t look like he’s enjoying the ascent – but that means nothing. . .

Zakarin misses out; Oliveira still has the best seat. Roglic is looking very good as Martin hits the climb – on the way to losing his title. Dumoulin is on the tri-bars, thrashing that Giant up the wet tar.
Roglic is flying, he puts half-a-minute into Oilveira, wow!

Chris Froome was fast, but not good to watch

Froome spins, contorts, nods, bobs, as Dumoulin eats up the tar between him and the Sky double Grand Tour winner. Dennis finishes – anti climax for the man who’s ridden the fastest time trial ever in a Tour time trial.

A stunning ride from Dumoulin

Dumoulin powers on as Tony Martin rides the climb better than any of us expected. Castroviejo – nope. Froome now – but Dumoulin is right there! The big Dutchman puts 56 seconds into Oliveira – different class. Dumoulin, Oliveira, Froome – the one, two three.

Despite – or because of? The course, an entertaining day. Hail Dumoulin, the new Chrono King.

Men’s World Individual Time Trial Result:
1. Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands) in 44:41
2. Primoz Roglic (Slovenia) at 0:58
3. Chris Froome (Great Britain) at 1:21
4. Nelson Oliveira (Portugal) at 1:29
5. Vasil Kiryienka (Belarus) at 1:29
6. Gianni Moscon (Italy) at 1:29
7. Wilco Kelderman (Netherlands) at 1:34
8. Rohan Dennis (Australia) at 1:37
9. Tony Martin (Germany) at 1:40
10. Jan Tratnik (Slovenia) at 1:43
11. Bob Jungels (Luxembourg) at 1:49
12. Nicolas Roche (Ireland) at 1:54
13. Alexis Gougeard (France) at 1:54
14. Jonathan Castroviejo (Spain) at 2:01
15. Ilnur Zakarin (Russian Federation) at 2:04
16. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Norway) at 2:11
17. Andrey Grivko (Ukraine) at 2:15
18. Nikias Arndt (Germany) at 2:16
19. Ignatas Konovalovas (Lithuania) at 2:21
20. Martin Toft Madsen (Denmark) at 2:33
21. Laurens De Plus (Belgium) at 2:35
22. Yves Lampaert (Belgium) at 2:35
23. Victor Campenaerts (Belgium)
24. Jan Barta (Czech Republic) at 2:39
25. Stefan Kung (Switzerland) at 2:46.

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