Following a very successful performance in Matane, Canada, in the final event of the UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup series, the action for the South African Para-cycling team moved to the Canadian town of Baie-Comeau for the 2013 Para-cycling Road World Championships.
Day 1 (29 August) saw the South African tricyclists Yusthin Lintnaar and George Rex perform well in their time trial events. This is the first season of international competition for both riders.
Lintnaar finished in 6th place behind a seasoned field of Paralympian riders and previous World Cup and World Championship medallists. At the halfway point of the race Rex was lying in 2nd place, fractionally behind the defending Spanish World Champion. As the race progressed, and the technical challenges of the route surfaced, Rex slipped to 3rd place however, finishing 37 seconds behind the winner Aitor Oroza Flores.
South African reclining hand-cyclist Stuart McCreadie rode the race of his life in the time trial, with a personal best finish in 4thplace. This performance equals his World Cup achievement of the previous week when he finished a personal best 4th place in the road race. McCreadie’s hand-cyclist colleague Justine Asher, riding in her first World Championships, rode a brave time trial under very difficult conditions attributable to mechanical problems with her bike. With the support of the Team Mechanic, Pieter Jansen, her road race is expected to be a much better experience.
Top performer of the day was defending road race World Champion Ernst van Dyk who, rewarded by a silver medal, acknowledged that he rode one of the best time trial races of his life. Van Dyk, who is recognised more for his road racing than time trial skills, had set his sights on a World Championship time trial medal – and achieved this in magnificent fashion. He was beaten only narrowly by Paralympian gold medallist Alessandro Zanardi in a race that was considerably tenser than the previous week’s World Cup series final in which Van Dyk failed to achieve a podium finish. Clearly, van Dyk thrives on the adrenaline triggered by a technically challenging route.
Day 2 saw Roxy Burns compete in the C4 Time Trial, where she finished 7th in amongst a star-studded women’s field. Burns’ focus is predominantly on the track, and the road season has helped keep her performance consistently high throughout the year.
With two more days of the World Championships to run their course, the South African team is confident that a few more medals will be returning home with them following the road races that are now scheduled.
Summary of Results – 2013 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships
Women’s H1 Time Trial
1 Justine Asher RSA 30:02.07
Men H2 Time Trial
1 Vittorio Podesta ITA 28:41.55
2 Heinz Frei SUI 29:02.30 +20.75
3 Walter Ablinger AUT 29:09.76 +28.21
4 Stuart McCreadie RSA 30:28.28 +1:46.73
Men H4 Time Trial
1 Alessandro Zanardi ITA 27:15.25
2 Ernst van Dyk RSA 27:29.47 +14.22
3 Time de Vries NED 28:31.03 +1:15.78
Men T1 Time Trial
1 Aitor Oroza Flores ESP 21:03.28
2 Jiri Hindr CZE 21:21.46 +18.18
3 George Rex RSA 21:40.88 +37.60
Men T2 Time Trial
1 Hans-Peter Durst GER 14:53.58
2 David Stone GBR 15:04.23 +10.65
3 Nestor Ayala Ayala COL 15:59.24 + 1:05.66
6 Yusthin Lintnaar RSA 16:36.48 +1:42.90
Women C4 Time Trial
1 Megan Fisher USA 26:53.14
2 Marie-Claude Molnar CAN 27:12.58 +19.44
3 Susan Powell AUS 27:37.84 +44.70
7 Roxanne Burns RSA 35:10.89 +8:17.75