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World championships: Filippo Ganna stamps authority in men’s elite individual time trial

The young Italian rewrote all the best intermediate times en route to his first elite men's time trial win.

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Filippo Ganna (ITL) won the elite men’s individual time trial at the 2020 UCI road cycling world championships, in Imola, Italy.

Covering the sunbathed, 31.7km route at an average speed of 52kph (32mph), the 24-year-old Italian bested strong performances from Geraint Thomas (GBR), Tom Dumoulin (NED), Remy Cavagna (FRA), and two-time defending champion Rohan Dennis (AUS).

The triple world champion and world record holder in the individual pursuit on the track said, “It is a dream for me, and I’m really happy. At the finish, I had really good support in the car. And I give my personal thank you to the whole team of Italy and my team Ineos Grenadiers.” Ganna added, “I win four rainbow jersey in the track and this is my first in the time trial and I will celebrate with my family.”

A few spots of rain were notable on the end of the course in the first hour, by the time the favorites lined up the roads were dry, and there was a chasing wind in the second half of the route.

Thomas started midway through the day and posted the best time at the midway check, holding off Dumoulin and Wout van Aert (BEL) by 10 seconds.

Stefan Kung (SWI) came through at 6 seconds back of the best time at the 14km time check.

However, Ganna, who rides for the Ineos Grenadiers on the road alongside Thomas and Dennis, updated this time check by 35 seconds, as the second-to-last man on the course.

The Ineos Grenadier who is dominant on the track said of his preparation for the road time trial, “I stayed at altitude two to three days ago and we [the Grenadiers] speak to [each] other, but not about the world championships. I don’t have pressure with my body, and now it’s a dream. I don’t have words.”

Dennis started 90 seconds back of Ganna, and was 20 seconds in arrears of his trade-teammate at the only time check.

On the back half of the course, with a 30kph wind at their backs, the order rearranged.

Dumoulin had to put a foot down and slide his bike around a 90-degree left turn with 10km to go. This must have shaken the 2017 time trial world champion, as he finished more than 40 seconds out of first.

At the finish, Van Aert bested Thomas by 10 seconds, while Stefan Kung bested the Brit by 7 seconds, just 3 seconds behind the Swiss.

The two were second and third positions, respectively 26 seconds and 29 seconds behind Ganna, while Dennis ceded 39 seconds to his Ineos teammate, and just two seconds to Thomas.

Results will be available once stage has completed.

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