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Wiggins covered 54.526km in London to improve Dowsett's record

Photo: A.S.O.

BRADLEY WIGGINS

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07.06.2015 @ 21:50 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Bradley Wiggins has improved the Hour Record in London. The English Tour de France winner covered 54.526km in the Olympic velodrome. Hence, he did better than Alex Dowsett who had set a mark of 52.924km in May.

 

Wiggins had set his sights on 55.250 kilometers, but was unable to accelerate in the last part. His compatriot Chris Boardman rode 56.375km in 1996 but that record was deleted after the rules were changed.

 

Wiggins beat the previous record, set by fellow Briton Alex Dowsett on May 2 in Manchester, by 1,589 metres.

After five seasons riding for Team Sky, with whom he won the 2012 Tour de France, Wiggins, 35, he now joins the tiny elite of riders (Petit-Breton, Coppi, Anquetil, Merckx and Indurain) who have won the Tour de France and beaten the UCI Hour Record.

Since the modernisation of the UCI Hour Record regulations, which were introduced by the UCI in May 2014 and permit the use of up-to-date pursuit bikes, the event has seen a tremendous rise in popularity amongst riders, broadcasters, the media and fans. 

In September 2014, German Jens Voigt became the first of a series of riders to reignite interest in the UCI Hour Record; seven attempts, of which four have been successful (Voigt, Matthias Brändle, Rohan Dennis and Alex Dowsett), preceded Bradley Wiggins’ triumph tonight in London.

The 2014 UCI Individual Time Trial World Champion has become the eighth rider to attempt the modern UCI Hour Record, and the fifth to break it, in the space of nine months.

“I am really glad it’s done”, said Bradley Wiggins after the attempt. “This is as close as I’ll get to know what giving birth feels like. It is torturous; you never think it is going to come to an end. I am just really glad it’s done, the build-up was long since Paris-Roubaix. My wife and children know more than anyone about air pressure. I am glad to be in the company of these greats, Rominger, Indurain…”

 

“Bradley Wiggins was very impressive tonight”, declared UCI President Brian Cookson. “The UCI Hour Record has witnessed something special tonight in an incredible atmosphere that was reminiscent of the London 2012 Olympic Games. We modernised the event’s rules in order to create this kind of occasion.”

 

“Pushing the record to 54,526 is an outstanding achievement, of which Brad and the team around him will be justifiably extremely proud.”

 

“It’s a high bar but, like Brad, I hope that other riders will come forward to go against what is in many senses the purest record of all, how far an athlete can push themselves in 60 grueling minutes on the very edge of their abilities.”

 

Multiple Hour Record, Olympic Medal and Tour de France stage winner Chris Boardman said: “I’ve enjoyed seeing the hour being revitalised and especially watching how Brad approached the challenge with the attention to detail the monument deserves. It’s unfortunate that he made the attempt with such high air pressure, I’d love to see him try it again in circumstances where he is less tied to a start time and can go when conditions are optimal. If he were able to do that, I think he could well set the furthest distance ever recognised.”

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