Kiryienka takes time trial gold as Martin's run ends

Wed Sep 23, 2015 6:36pm EDT
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By Steve Keating

RICHMOND, Virginia (Reuters) - Nearly man Vasil Kiryienka of Belarus powered his way to

victory in the road cycling world championship time trail on Wednesday as Tony Martin's run of six consecutive podium finishes ended.

Kiryienka, bronze medalist in 2012 and fourth-place finisher the last two years, surprised the favorites by covering the grueling 53km (32.9 miles) layout that began in an amusement park and ended in downtown Richmond in a blistering 1 hour, 2 minutes, 29.45 seconds.

Italian Adriano Malori came home 9.08 seconds adrift to take silver, while Jerome Coppel, at 26.62 seconds, grabbed the bronze to give France their first medal since 1997 in the race against the clock.

"The most important thing today was to race against myself, a time trial against myself," Kiryienka told reporters.

"I knew the time, the references but it was not so important but what I knew from the very beginning was I doing really well.

"Tony Martin and Tom Dumoulin were favorites today but I think today was my day."

It certainly was not Martin's day as his bid to match Swiss Fabian Cancellara's record of four gold medals in the event went flatter than a punctured tire.   Continued...

Team Sky's rider Vasil Kiryienka of Belarus celebrates on the podium after winning the 14th stage, a 59.4-km individual time trial, of the 98th Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy) cycling race from Treviso to Valdobbiadene, Italy, May 23, 2015. REUTERS/LaPresse/Fabio Ferrari