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Alex Dowsett regains national time trial crown, Hayley Simmonds takes women's title

Record-equalling fourth victory for Movistar rider, Scott Davies retains under-23 jersey

Alex Dowsett has this evening won the men’s British National Time Trial Championship for a record-equalling fourth time. Earlier, Hayley Simmonds took the women’s title, while Scott Davies retained his under-23 crown.

12 months ago in Monmouthshire, Dowsett was thwarted by Sir Bradley Wiggins as he sought to take his fourth national championship against the clock.

The defending champion was absent today, however, and the Movistar rider won by more two and a half minutes on a testing 44.8km course that started and finished at the Cadwell Park motor racing circuit.

Afterwards, he told the British Cycling website: "It's lovely to get it back. It's really significant being national champion.

“Now every time I do a time-trial I get to wear this, it stands me out as either the British or Dutch national champion,” he joked – although besides the red, white and blue bands, the latter’s skinsuit will of course be orange.

"I couldn't have lost it to a more talented guy last year in Brad but it's nice to have it back," he added.

Dowsett, who in 2013 won a time trial stage in the Giro d’Italia, will be hoping this evening’s ride is enough to merit him a place in Movistar’s line-up for the Tour de France, which begins with an individual time trial in Utrecht.

He faces competition however from fellow specialists in the discipline, Adriano Malori and Jonathan Castroviejo.

But with Dowsett setting a new UCI Hour Record at the start of May - losing it to Wiggins earlier this month - and then proving his form on the road with his maiden stage race win in the Bayern Rundfahrt a fortnight later, today’s win must strengthen his case.

The podium was completed by Edmund Bradbury of NFTO, who went round in 1:03.42 to finish second, with SportGrub-Kuota rider Ryan Perry third.

Despite his emphatic win, Dowsett’s ride wasn’t without problems.

"On lap one I got stung by a wasp just inside my thigh, which kind of added insult to injury,” he revealed.

“Something always happens at nationals for me. I think I've had a crash, a bike change, being sick as a dog and this year a wasp sting so - yeah - a thrill a minute!"

Hayley Simmonds takes women's title

Picture copyright Allan McKenzie/

Team Velosport rider and University of Cambridge PhD student Simmonds won the women’s title by more than a minute from Molly Weaver of Liv Plantur and Dame Sarah Storey of Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International.

Simmonds, a former rower who last year was national time trial champion over both 10 and 50 miles, completed the 33.6km course in 51:39.89 for a surprise victory today.

She said: "It's completely overwhelming - I've worked really hard for this.

“I hoped it was going to be really close and I just went out and did the ride that I thought I could, did the effort I thought I could and obviously it paid off.

"I was just trying to focus on getting out the ride that I was capable of and not necessarily concentrating on the other big names that were starting after me."

"Cycling has just changed my life to be honest," she added. "I'm so glad that I'm good at it!

“It's completely changed my life – I've lost loads of weight and I've pushed really hard to drop those extra few kilos, ready for this, ready for that climb on the course and the climb on here.

"It's really paid off – it's been a really hard road but it's paid off."

Picture copyright Allan McKenzie/

In today’s first event, Davies of 100%ME successfully defended his under23 title. Axeon rider Tao Geoghegan Hart finished third.

"It was pretty tough - I think the nature of the course meant holding a rhythm wasn't that easy today," he said after retaining the national champion’s jersey.

"It's quite rolling so there's no real stretch where you can hold the same pace. It's up, down and up. That steep hill is quite tough as well - quite a testing course.

"Relieved is the word that I'd use to describe how today went. I came up to it with a bit more pressure than last year - relieved to have defended it."

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Albert Herring | 8 years ago

There is, of course, no orange on the Dutch champion's jerseys

Gkam84 | 8 years ago

Well, Hayley was a surprise winner to everyone that knows nowt about women's cycling. I had her tipped for a top 3 at least and on that course I saw her as the clear winner.

This was confirmed to me when I was working at Curlew Cup with Molly Weavers father, who runs the IKON Mazda women's team, he said that Hayley was his favourite to take the title.

I didn't have Molly on for a podium, but that is because she rarely time trials. So that was a great result. I had Sarah and Katie down to podium, but thought they might struggle coming off the back of the women's tour.

TheFatAndTheFurious | 8 years ago

Congrats to Alex and Hayley.  41

On the downside, Movistar has already announced its shortlist for the 2015 TDF, and Alex isn't on it.  40

Unless they've changed their minds already...

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