Jessica Allen (Australia) won Australia’s first title at the UCI World Championships in Copenhagen, snatching the women’s Junior time trial from Elinor Barker (Great Britain).
Allen was the last rider to start the 13.9km time trial. Barker started three places before her and set a time of 19:20. That seemed good enough to secure the title but Allen blasted home to win with a time of 19:18. Germany’s Mieke Kroger took the bronze medal with a time of 19:21.
Georgia Williams (New Zealand) finished sixth with a time of 20:02 and Annie Ewart (Canada) was seventh, two seconds slower. Addyson Albershardt of the USA finished 14th with a time of 20:19.
Allen credited her narrow victory to her mastery of the technical sections of the city centre course in Copenhagen. She was the last rider down the start ramp and knew that the rainbow jersey was in her sights when she hit the midway point with the fastest intermediate time. Hover her title would prove to be hard-earned.
“I got the time check at halfway that I was the fastest to the turnaround point and that really lifted me I think,” Allen said. “The course was so technical I think that maintaining high speed into the corners and through the corners was essential.
“To have the car telling me which ones were the tight ones and which ones were the sweepers, was really beneficial and I think that’s definitely what the last seconds came down to.”
A very happy Jessica Allen
After gloomy and damp conditions greeted the riders when they tested the time trial course on Sunday afternoon, the skies cleared and the roads dried in time for the main event on Monday morning. That pleased Allen.
“I think the weather conditions were perfect. The course wasn’t too windy out there because we had a lot of protection from the buildings. It was pretty good I think,” she said.
The West Australian joked that she had little time to appreciate her surroundings as she bowled through the heart of Copenhagen towards the finish in the imposing shadow of the Radhus, or city hall.
“I couldn’t really take in the scenery too much doing the time trial,” Allen laughed. “But the circuit they’ve chosen here is just awesome. I really liked the course. I did it yesterday and it wasn’t a typical flat course either.”
Allen’s next and most immediate challenge is the junior women’s road race, which takes place on Friday. Beyond that, however, the 18-year-old is looking forward to making the step up to the senior ranks.
“Next year I move up to open women’s (category), so I’ll have a training camp in November with some of the senior girls, so that’s going to be a great experience for me,” Allen said. “Moving up into the senior ranks, I can’t wait for that.”
And can she add to her burgeoning collection of international titles at elite level? “I hope so, but at some point in the future,” Allen smiled.
This article was originally published on Cyclingnews.com.