Alex Dowsett considered his perfectly paced 60 minutes hour record victory as easy.
UK gambling fans at the track center at Manchester Velodrome were in for a treat as 26-year-old Alex Dowsett, contender to the hour record never “wavered, wobbled or weaved” as he kept up the pace in his 212 laps to victory. The breaking of the hour record by almost a 500 meters, seemed to have as the secret of his success, a steady pace and a determination to beat the odds.
For, at the tender age of one and a half years, Dowsett was diagnosed with a severe form of haemophilia, back in the days when some forms of betting was outlawed under UK gambling laws as was physical activity for haemophiliacs. But Dowsett was determined to disobey his doctors orders. His fight culminated in joy and tears and a real record-breaking moment at the National Cycling Centre.
Bradley Wiggins ready to break world hour record
After Chris Boardman, Dowsett became the second UK rider to crack the hour record at 52.937 km. Rohan Dennis from Australia held the record in 2014. As he raced around almost two extra laps, the Essex rider said that he may make another bid later in the year, probably against Sir Bradley Wiggins, who will make his attempt on 7 June.
Wiggins said “I’d love to see Alex go for it at the end of the year. That’s what the record is all about”. It appeared that Dennis was faster than Dowsett at the outset. According to UK gambling news, one part of the scoreboard showed how he compared in real time to Dennis, while a smaller figure showed what he would achieve if his current pace were maintained for 60 minutes.
Dowsett admitted to have been frustrated to being so near the 53km mark
Dowsett set off at snail’s pace in the opening lap and a half. While Dennis was 8 seconds ahead behind the British in the opening 25 minutes, because he had sped away like lightning at the beginning, he then dramatically slowed the pace down in his final 15 minutes. However, once he notched up to cruising speed, he self-assuredly kept at an even cadence for the rest of the laps in about 17 second.
Then he pedaled like hell for the last 15 minutes up to when the flag came up. Dowsett said of this amazing experience that “I wish people hadn’t told me it was going to be so hard. Compared to what I had expected, it was easy. I was expecting it to be horrific but it was just terrible… It was frustrating to be so close to the 53km mark”.
Dowsett continued that “The coaches gave me a plan which I didn’t like too much, which was to be behind Dennis for three-quarters of an hour. This was the first time we had run with the velodrome at a high temperature, so I knew it would be easier earlier on. I got a bit excited around halfway, and the last 10 minutes got a bit grippy.” Dowsett had to keep to the same grueling metronomic pace of about 100 pedal revolutions per minute.
Steve Dennis, his coach, had set out for him this pace to ride by. During the race, his coach would indicate with hand movements that he was either a little bit ahead or on an even pace. To mobile betting fans it may have seemed that Dowsett was riding in slow-motion, but as all good tactics are, Dowsett was maintaining his 32mph for most of his 160 laps. So the 40 km distance that made British time trial history, was achieved in around 47 minutes.
What a recovery
By the time the rider reached 31 minutes it was more and more obvious that he could hold the record. As his average speed surpassed the 52.491km mark of Dennis’s record, the audience whooped with joy. He picked up speed in the final 10 minutes, hitting a 17 second ace in the rink, over Dennis. And for the remaining 7 minutes, he careened around confidently to victory.
Dowsett, who had broke a collarbone in January, which caused him to delay this attempt by two months, is the 6th rider to have a go so far, saw his dream come true. For, with just under 28 seconds, equivalent to a little under two laps, of his 60 minutes to run, he beat Dennis’s distance which saw UK sports betting sites delivering big bucks to punters who had bet on him.