JOHANNESBURG – Rio Olympian Daryl Impey continued his domination of the national time trial event as he successfully defended his title at the national road championships in sweltering Oudtshoorn on Wednesday.
Impey, 34, won last month’s Tour Down Under in Australia and came up trumps for a seventh time at the national time trial.
A small field of eight elite men took up the challenge and the Mitchelton-Scott rider clocked 52 minutes 37 seconds for the 43.8km course.
That saw him end 2:17 up on the up-and-coming Ryan Gibbons of Team Dimension Data and 6:49 ahead of Cape Town rider Rohan de Plooy.
“It’s always nice to win the time trial, every year there is always a bit more pressure. I was confident after Down Under that I would come here and be able to do a good ride, it was really hard and I am super happy with it,” Impey told the Mitchelton-Scott website.
“I started off quite fast and hard, kind of blew up a little bit towards the end, but I think I still paced it quite well. It was so hot compared to other years and I think the competition felt that. It was around 36deg at 2.30pm in the afternoon.”
Next up for Impey will be yet another attempt at winning the road race on Saturday.
“The road race is something I’ve never won so there’s always pressure from myself to try and win. It is important to try and win it eventually, but it is hard, I know the odds are stacked against me with all the teams and their numbers.
“I’m hoping to carry some form from Down Under and hopefully do something special on Saturday, we will see, it is always difficult to say what will happen.
“Condition-wise I am ready for it, it is quite a short race so I think it should be quite aggressive.”
With Rio Olympian Ashleigh Moolman Pasio not defending her title this year, the elite women’s TT victory went to Liezel Jordaan as she covered the 29.2km course in a time of 45:11.
That saw her just three seconds quicker than Yvette Oelofse.
African News Agency (ANA)