American Taylor Phinney (Boulder, Colo./BMC Racing Team) battled it out with the world’s best time trialists under blue skies and calm conditions on the streets of Toscana on Wednesday and produced yet another top-10 finish for the U.S. squad at 2013 UCI Road World Championships.
Phinney finished fifth in the elite men’s time trial to give the U.S. its seventh top-10 finish over the past three days of time trial action, including bronze-medal performances on Tuesday by Carmen Small (Durango, Colo./Specialized-lululemon) in the elite women’s time trial, and Zeke Mostov (San Francisco, Calif./ Slipstream-Craddock Junior Development) in the junior men’s time trial.
Winner of the silver medal last year, Phinney was up against the gold medalists in six of the last seven world championships in Germany’s Tony Martin (2011 & 2012) and Switzerland’s Fabian Cancellara (2006, 2007, 2009 & 2010). Phinney, who started the 57.86-kilometer race just ahead of Martin and Cancellara, was among the top riders as he passed through each checkpoint, but behind him Martin, Cancellara, and 2012 Tour de France winner and Olympic time trial champion Bradley Wiggins of Great Britain were turning in blistering times.
In the end, it was Martin winning his third consecutive world title with ease, over 46 seconds ahead of Wiggins and 48 seconds better than Cancellara. Phinney was 2:08 off the pace in fifth. For Martin, it was his second rainbow jersey of the week to go with the one he earned on Sunday with his Omega Pharma team in the team time trial.
“It was a really long time trial and I left it all out there,” said Phinney. “I’m not overjoyed with fifth but not heartbroken either. I prepared the best I could with the time that I had.”
Phinney’s American teammate, Andrew Talansky (Napa, Calif./Garmin-Sharp), finished in 46th place, 6:05.19 behind Martin.
The riders now look forward to a rest day on Thursday before the road races begin. Friday will feature the junior women and U23 men, with the junior men and elite women taking to the streets on Saturday, and the elite men wrapping up the world championships with their road race on Sunday.
2013 UCI Road World Championships
Elite Men’s Time Trial (57.86 km)
1. Tony Martin (GER) 1:05:36.65
2. Bradley Wiggins (GBR) +46.09
3. Fabian Cancellara (SUI) +48.34
5. Taylor Phinney (Boulder, Colo./BMC Racing Team) +2:08.00
46. Andrew Talansky (Napa, Calif./Garmin-Sharp) +6:05.19