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Cycling - 16. August 2013.

Fifth place for Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling in Vårgårda team time trial Word Cup

Fifth place for Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling in Vårgårda team time trial Word Cup

Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling took an excellent fifth place in the World Cup team time trial, in Vårgårda, Switzerland, despite having to overcome several problems before the race. The team of Beatrice Bartelloni, Charlotte Becker, Emily Collins, Lauren Kitchen, Dani King and Linda Villumsen completed the 43km course in a time of 56 minutes 44.7 seconds, to finish just 2'45" behind Specialized-lululemon who took a third victory in the event.

"It was my first ever team time trial," said Olympic champion King. "Obviously we've been practising a lot, but it was my first time in a race scenario and it was good."

With New Zealander Collins suffering from a virus, German Becker still feeling the aftereffects of the crash that forced her out of the Route de France, and Italian Bartelloni drafted into the team late, the six riders were reduced to four early on but still managed to finish in what was the fastest time so far.

The Sengers Ladies team then went just seven seconds quicker, before Specialized-lululemon posted the fastest time. Last year's runner up Orica-AIS then went into provisional second place, before being pushed down to third by Rabobank-Liv/Giant.

"The radio broke down after about 20km, but the time checks were pretty irrelevant because were were just giving it all we had," King explained. "We lost two riders very early on, so we were down to four, which made it pretty hard. We can only take the positives out of it, because it was a pretty good result considering there were only four of us for the majority of the ride."

One rider that might have made a difference was King's fellow Olympic champion Joanna Rowsell, who missed the race as she recovers from the broken collarbone she suffered in the Prudential RideLondon Grand Prix earlier in the month.

"We definitely missed Jo, but it was just incredible for me to see how much determination was in the team," said King. "There were so many gritted teeth today, and so many characters came out, and it was just amazing to be a part of that team.

"Personally, before the race, I would have said that to five would be amazing," she continued. "Specialized-lululemon has been here for a least a week preparing; we only rode the course once and we only had four so, sure, that's a good result.

"We didn't go in with any major expectations, just for us all to do our best, and as long as we crossed the line knowing that we'd all given 100% then we couldn't really ask for more and the result was going to be irrelevant. But when we crossed the line and found out that we'd come fifth, and we weren't too far off either, I think we can only draw positives out of that.

"I think if Jo comes back before the Worlds it'll be pretty exciting going into that," King added.

"If we hadn't had any hiccups today I thought we'd probably have finished about fifth, so they definitely met my expectations" said Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling team manager Rochelle Gilmore. "But what's more impressive is that they did it with four riders. We know that with Jo in there we can lift the speed significantly, and with a sixth rider that's not sick - and not having Lotte injured - it means that we have the potential to medal at the World Championships.

"The morale in the team's really high because they can see that potential to win a medal at the Worlds."

Result

1. Specialized-lululemon

2. Rabobank-Liv/Giant

3. Orica-AIS

5. Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling
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