Tony Martin still going strongly, wins Chrono des Nations
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Sunday, October 16, 2011

Tony Martin still going strongly, wins Chrono des Nations

by Bjorn Haake at 11:50 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
 
Neben and Armstrong take US double win in women's race

tony martinTony Martin preserved his brilliant form all the way to October, taking the 48.5km long Chrono des Nations in the French Vendée region. Martin was more than two minutes ahead of his closest rivals, Gustav Erik Larsson (Saxo Bank) and Alex Dowsett (Sky) to likely give HTC Highroad its last ever professional cycling victory. The team folds at the end of the year.

Amber Neben beat Kristin Armstrong in the 20.9km long women's event by the much smaller margin of nine seconds. Armstrong was still ahead by three seconds at the only intermediate check point, halfway through the race. The US pair was followed by two Russians, Olga Zabelinskaia and Tatiana Antoshina.

Martin clocked a time of 56'20 for an average speed of 51,657 km/h. His gap to Larsson was 2'03 and showed that Martin is the undisputed king of time trial in 2011. It will be interesting to see Fabian Cancellara get back to his best next year and challenge Martin in the big showdowns.

Dowsett had simply an outstanding first year as a professional. He was 2'50 behind Martin and for the eighth time this season, Dowsett climbed onto the podium this season. The 23-year-old has also three wins to his credit.

Dowsett beat Stef Clement by half a minute and David Millar by 50 seconds. Millar held off Team Type 1's Laszlo Bodrogi by a mere six seconds. Stijn Devolder did not have the best of seasons. The double Tour of Flanders winner (2008 and 2009) was winless in 2011.

US women dominate

Neben rides for the HTC Highroad team and her win gave the team a double victory. "Yes! Just won the Chrono des Nations!" Neben tweeted after the race. "Tony won the men's race. Great final day of racing for HTC Highroad." Neben was in a bit of a hurry, trying to make it to the train station. "Rallying to the TGV station now."

Neben had a hectic weekend. "I flew in from home (California) yesterday, and I go back home tomorrow [Monday]! Nothing like a weekend (or 1.5 days) in France!"

For Armstrong it was a further setback in her quest to defend her Olympic time trial title in London next year. The US has three contenders for two spots - besides Neben and Armstrong there is also Evelyn Steven, the US National Champion. Armstrong was replaced in the World Championships by Neben, after Armstrong had already flown to Denmark for the Worlds. She had said previously that it was important to make the World Championships if she wanted to have a shot at getting selected for the 2012 Olympics.

Jeannie Longo did race in the Chrono des Nations, after skipping the World Championships for her missed doping test. She finished eighth, 2'17 behind Neben.

Results men

1 MARTIN Tony HTC 56'20"84
2 LARSSON Gustav SBS 58'23"85
3 DOWSETT Alex SKY 59'10"48
4 CLEMENT Stef RAB 59'40"94
5 MILLAR David GRM 1h00'11"67
6 BODROGI Laszlo TT1 1h00'18"35
7 DEVOLDER Stijn VAC 1h00'25"60
8 WESTRA Lieuwe VAC 1h00'30"67
9 DE GENDT Thomas VAC 1h01'13"23

Results women

1 NEBEN Amber USA 27'58"45
2 ARMSTRONG Kristin USA 28'07"47
3 ZABELINSKAIA Olga RUS 29'01"77
4 ANTOSHINA Tatiana RUS 29'05"69
5 SUNDSTEDT Pia FIN 29'13"70
6 SHAW Julia GBR 29'24"89
7 LAWS Sharon GBR 30'00"53
8 LONGO Jeannie RHA 30'15"13
9 *LESUEUR Mélodie IDF 30'20"97
10 DE VOCHT Liesbet BEL 30'21"21

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