Alex Dowsett beats the UCI Hour Record (52.937km) after incredibly consistence leads him to a resounding feat in the 60 toughest minutes of his sporting career
The immense talent by Alex Dowsett and a magnificent planning and technical work by the whole Movistar Team took the UCI Hour Record back to within the ranks of Eusebio Unzué's squad, twenty-one years after an unforgettable evening in Bordeaux. The National Cycling Centre in Manchester witnessed a consistency exhibition from the Essex-born rider, who never got nervous and always enjoyed fantastic sensations to hit harder in the most appropriate moment, into the final 15 minutes of riding.
Always around 17.1 seconds per lap in the first half of the competition, the pace set by his coaches prior to the event, Dowsett 'dangerously' increased his pace towards 16.5s after 35 minutes in. However, the good signals from the Briton stayed until the very end and Dowsett finished his effort in relative freshness, improving Rohan Dennis' previous mark by almost half a kilometre and coming just 103 meters short of the other record held by the telephone squad: the extreme-bike 53.040km mark claimed by Miguel Indurain in 1994.
"In training, we only ever did like 35 minutes, so there was always those 25 minutes which were a bit of an unknown, but 30 minutes in, I was still feeling comfortably, the time was ticking away a lot quicker than I was expecting. I was scared of the suffering, but it wasn't as bad as I expected. That is a testimony to the preparation I went through – there was a plan, I didn't like it much, for the risk of riding behind Dennis for the first 45 minutes, but I had faith in my coaches, Mark Walker and Mikel Zabala. I was a little bit enthusiastic at times, but Steve was bringing me back down onto schedule. I just had faith in everything that's gone into today – it was carefully executed.
"Everyone in the team said that if I was feeling OK, I'd be let loose into the final five minutes. As soon as it clocked ten minutes to go, I had a lot in me still and I could press on a bit – it really was a dream. I just hope the message comes out – to all the young haemophiliacs, of any age really. There's a lot of people in the world who faces adversity. I was lucky to have a responsible family to take care of me, and I could push myself to this. It wasn't about failing or succeeding today – it was about trying something I hadn't done before."