‘It was a slog’ and ‘I’m overwhelmed’ were just some of the comments to come from elite time trial champions Alex Dowsett and Hayley Simmonds.
The pair came out of victorious at the National Time Trial Championships, organised by British Cycling which took place at Cadwell Park on Thursday.
Dowsett made easy work of his competition, shaving three minutes off second place man Edmund Bradbury with a gold medal run of 1:00.11, which was ridden over the testing 44.8-kilometre course that combined the open roads of Lincolnshire and the swooping tarmac of the Cadwell Park motor racing circuit.
Bradbury took the silver with a time of 1:03.42 and Ryan Perry with the bronze in 1:04.28.
For the elite women, Simmonds stormed the 33.6-kilometre circuit early on and set a time of 51:39.89 which favourite Dame Sarah Storey not being able to beat her time, coming home in 53.00.61, giving her the bronze.
Just ahead of her was Molly Weaver’s run of 52.58.18 which was good enough for the silver.
Joining Dowsett and Simmonds with the gold was the under 23s winner Scott Davies recording a time of 47:20.32 to retain the jersey he won in Monmouthshire 12-months-ago.
Team Wiggins’ rider Owain Doull took the silver in 47:26.53 and Tao Geoghegan Hart took the bronze with a time of 47:37.90.
With Dowsett just breaking over the hour with his ride, the Movistar Team rider comments on how the race went for him and his highlights of the day.
“It was a bit unnerving for me on the way round as I didn’t know where I was on timings and I wasn’t sure where everyone else was at,” he explained.
“The pacing was also difficult as it was straight up hill out of the blocks so it was hard to judge.
“The race was a real slog, the descent and climbs were tricky, but mainly it was challenging to get up to speed and be able to hold it.
“But I’m a massive fan of using motor racing circuits as a venue as they are built for racing and I’m really happy to have my top back again.”
It was a proud moment for Simmonds to achieve her goal of getting on the podium.
“I’m so proud to have won and I will be wearing my top with pride for the next 12 months,” Simmonds added.
“I worked really hard on my weight and my climbing as I knew it would be a tough course, alongside my bike handling.
“My goal was to finish on the podium and I knew if I did the ride I was capable of, then I would be up there.”