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World Championships 2018: Rohan Dennis wins time trial in dominating fashion

Jack Elton-Walters
26 Sep 2018

Tom Dumoulin's year of coming second continues as Rohan Dennis takes the TT rainbow jersey. Photos: Innsbruck-Tirol 2018 / BettiniPhoto

Rohan Dennis won the UCI World Championships Time Trial with a ride that was a cut above the rest, as he pushed defending champion Tom Dumoulin into second by over a minute.

Dumoulin was already 8.84 seconds down on Dennis at the first time split that came after 16.6km, but both riders were ahead of four time champion Tony Martin and the win was, at that point, set-up as a two horse race as expected.

However, after the first time check Dumoulin was expected to gain time on the course's main climb and make the final result much closer that it was at the end.

By the 35.2km mark Dennis's lead had extended to 1:01.73. Dumoulin would have been kept informed of the time checks and as such would have been aware of his title defence slipping away.

As the fight looked like it could go out of Dumoulin's effort, up the road Belgium's Victor Campenaerts was pushing on as the chance of not just a podium finish but the silver medal became more and more likely.

When he crossed the line, Campenaerts went into the hotseat but his two biggest rivals were still out on the road.

Dutchman Dumoulin came into the TT with a lot of race days in his legs after coming second at both the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France, while Dennis's whole season has been shaped by this one ride against the clock.

He also gave a lot to his team's effort for their eventual second place in last week's team time trial, where the win went to Quick-Step Floors.

Dumoulin's Team Sunweb were also the defending champions in that race but couldn't take the final TTT victory.

Dennis looked ecstatic as he got off his bike, knowing he'd done enough to capture the rainbow jersey.

In the closing stages Dumoulin was forced to push hard to ensure he took the second step on the podium, just making it across the line with 0.53 of a second to spare.