Cancellara clocks up first victory since March by taking Swiss time trial title
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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cancellara clocks up first victory since March by taking Swiss time trial title

by VeloNation Press at 5:31 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results, National Championships
 
Seventh TT championship win for RadioShack Nissan rider

Fabian CancellaraAlthough he’s still feeling the effects of the Tour de Suisse in his legs, particularly the two mountainous concluding stages on Saturday and Sunday, Fabian Cancellara today grabbed the seventh national time trial title of his career when he won the Swiss championships.

The RadioShack Nissan rider raced over the 50 kilometre course in one hour 30 seconds, beating Thomas Frei (Christina Watches-Onfone) by one minute 54 seconds and Tour de Suisse stage winner Martin Elmiger (Ag2r La Mondiale) by two minutes.

Although international competition was obviously not present, it’s a nice confidence booster after Cancellara’s TT defeats in the Tour de Suisse opening stage/prologue and the time trial. He was second to Peter Sagan (Liquigas Cannondale) in the former and edged out by Astana’s Fredrik Kessiakoff in the latter.

The stage race showed that he wasn’t yet back to his best after his quadruple collarbone break sustained in April’s Tour of Flanders, but today’s showing will give him encouragement and raise his morale prior to starting the Tour de France at the end of this month.

“I'm very proud to have won another Swiss title in the time trial. It's an honour to wear the colours of your country, even if you win the race for the seventh time,” he said after the race. “The competition was very motivated, because all of us want that title.

“I'm happy with where I stand at this point. I was relaxed and very focused. In a race like this you don't have the big infrastructure around you, there are no official split times and there are not so many competitors, but it's still very good to go home with a good feeling in the pocket,” he continued. “The race was only 20 kilometers from my home, so that made it extra special.”

Frei returned to cycling this year after a two year suspension and was pleased to clock up a good performance after that long break. Team owner Christina Hembo applauded the result, saying that it showed that the team made the right decision in taking him on.

“Now, Thomas has paid our confidence back and shown us what we hoped he was…a great rider. Firstly he was one of the architects behind Stefan Schumacher's victory in the Tour of Serbia and immediately thereafter he gets us a silver medal and lovely UCI points for the rankings,” she said. “We are satisfied that we can look forward to riding in the Tour of Denmark with a very strong and broad squad.”

RadioShack directeur sportif Luca Guercilena is similarly pleased with Cancellara’s result, but also acknowledges that he will continue to build speed. He calls the time trial ‘a work in progress.’

“This is not yet the Olympic time trial, of course, but it was a good test for him,” he said. “Every victory is a victory. He puts in two minutes to the second man, so that's very good. It's an indication that he's growing to his best shape and ability for this kind of long efforts, so I'm very satisfied."

The 31 year old Swiss rider will compete in the national road race championship on Sunday. He won that title twice in his career, in 2009 and 2011.

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