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Spartacus will be going for the record - but contrary to Gazzetta dello Sport report, no date or venue chosen yet

Trek Factory Racing has denied a report that Fabian Cancellara intends to attempt the Hour record in Aguascalientes, Mexico on 3 August, one week after the end of the Tour de France. The date and venue had been reported this morning by Italian sports daily, La Gazzetta dello Sport, but while the Swiss rider's team say he will be attempting the record, it maintains no date or venue has been finalised yet.

The 32-year-old Cancellara, who last week said he was unlikely to ride beyond the end of the 2016, revealed his plans last November to attempt the record. He has the backing of his Trek Factory Racing team and its bike sponsor, with 15 technicians and mechanics said to be working on the project.

In November, the team's manager, Luca Guercilena, said that Cancellara might attempt the record following the Spring Classics, where he will be defending his titles at the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix, both of which he won last year.

But in a statement issued in response to the Gazzetta's assertion that the rider would then turn his attention to the track ahead of a crack at the record on Sunday 3 August in Mexico, Guercilena said: “We haven’t taken any decision whatsoever about the time and the place for an attempt. As we have said before, the team will communicate in the appropriate time. Any other information that circulates around a possible attempt is premature.”

The team did say, however, that "the hour record attempt is a real project for Trek Factory Racing and an ambition for both Cancellara and the team in 2014."

Guercilena added: “We are working on this project since some time now and we have a series of people managing the project, including engineers at Trek Bicycle. However, there is no present-day reference for this kind of endeavour and we are still studying all of its facets.

"We are in discussions with several tracks around the world, and in terms of timing, I can only confirm that we are no longer considering the period after the Classics for an attempt. The focus for Fabian is now fully on the Classics and an attempt to repeat the success of last year. After Paris-Roubaix, we’ll turn our attention to the hour record and we will have more details.”

The Gazzetta dello Sport had said that after Paris-Roubaix, Cancellara would take to the track to begin his preparations in earnest, breaking off ahead of July's Tour de France, adding that he was unlikely to ride the entire three weeks of the race.

The newspaper added that between 22 July and the eve of the record attempt, he would train on the Aguascalientes track twice a day, the venue chosen both for the smoothness of its track and its elevation of nearly 2,000 metres above sea level.

A rider of Cancellara's standing attempting the Hour, and Tony Martin and Sir Bradley Wiggins also expressing an interest in it, should see the record restored to its one-time stature as a prestigious goal for top riders.

The possible competition between the three evokes memories of the 1990s when Miguel Indurain, Francesco Moser, Tony Romiger, Graeme Obree and Chris Boardman all vied to ride the farthest distance in an hour.

In 1996, Boardman rode 56.375km in the “Superman” position that Obree had developed, but advances in aerodynamic equipment and riding positions led to the UCI rewriting the rules and making a distinction between the Best Human Record and the UCI Hour Record.

The distance that Eddy Merckx set of 49.431km in 1972 was reinstated as the official UCI Hour Record, and would be beaten by Boardman at Manchester in 2000. Using a traditional bike, as the rules now require, he rode 49.441km.

The current record is 49.7km, set by the little-known Czech rider Ondřej Sosenka in Moscow in 2005. In June 2008, Sosenka tested positive for the banned stimulant methamphetamine and its metabolites and received a suspension which ended his career.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

14 comments

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notfastenough [3715 posts] 2 years ago
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So now all we need is for Wiggo and the panzerwagon to go for it at the same time in different velodromes, and some split-screen TV coverage- bring it!

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stenmeister [306 posts] 2 years ago
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Is Wiggins challenging Cancellara on everything this year following his interest in Paris-Roubaix?

It's difficult to figure out who has the edge. I can't see Wiggo challenging Cancellara in the spring classic but the hour record may be different.

And what about Tony Martin? His breakaway in the Vuelta was one of the best rides of last year and shows he can go solo for a long time.

Either way, it's great to see the hour record generating interest again.

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RobD [293 posts] 2 years ago
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I'm not sure the timings of BW and TM's race calendars would allow for the three of them to have at it at the same time, but that would be a pretty awesome spectacle if it could happen.

I think a determined Wiggins is pretty tough to beat, hopefully this will be a good season for him and give him the drive to win, could make some very good challenges between the three of them.

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ragtimecyclist [158 posts] 2 years ago
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It's just great to have some big names apparently interested in having a go at the hour, which is a great spectacle. At any given moment i could make a case for Wiggo, Cancellara or Tony Martin being the man to beat...really hope they all give it a crack as it's too close to call.

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 2 years ago
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For even two of them to try at the same time is pretty unlikely.

If you think about it, you need the right

Bike
Venue
Conditions
Training

and probably lots more to boot. There are only a few venues in the world where you would consider having a chance at the record. Mexico being one, Manchester being another...can't think of many more.

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Simon_MacMichael [2466 posts] 2 years ago
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Story now updated with Trek Factory Racing denying date or venue set.

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Rupert [190 posts] 2 years ago
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Preston Park track in Brighton I am sure would be available for Fabain's recored attempt.

At nearly sea level it would be an excellent place, in my opinion for an attempt at the record  1

The track is one of if not the oldest cycling track in the country and is regularly used for racing in the Summer for the SCRL Track league http://www.scrl.co.uk

If Fabian can wait to the end of August it should be free.

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mtm_01 [196 posts] 2 years ago
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Rupert wrote:

Preston Park track in Brighton I am sure would be available for Fabain's recored attempt.

At nearly sea level it would be an excellent place, in my opinion for an attempt at the record  1

The track is one of if not the oldest cycling track in the country and is regularly used for racing in the Summer for the SCRL Track league http://www.scrl.co.uk

If Fabian can wait to the end of August it should be free.

Sure mate  3

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 2 years ago
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Isn't Preston Park a square??

If I was consdering an attempt, this would be my list of venues

Commonwealth Velodrome, New Delhi, India
Saryarka, Astana
Fassa Bortolo, Brescia (climate controlled)
London Velopark
Manchester Velodrome
Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome
Boulder Valley, Erie, Colorado (opening soon, altitude)
Aguascalientes Bicentenary, Aguascalientes (altitude)
Panamericano, Guadalajara (altitude)

That is it. I cannot think of any other indoor that you would try it and unless the weather conditions are perfect, I wouldn't even think about an outdoor event, the smallest breeze is going to give you, tail, head and side winds as you go round. Over an hour, that will kill your speed.

He'll have a special bike and select crew. Then it all about training and fitting it into his schedule. He has to make sure he is a peak fitness, which isn't very easy when you are a pro cyclist with all the races you have to cram in.

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Paul J [908 posts] 2 years ago
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Are Manchester, Glasgow and London not all climate-controlled too? Glasgow certainly is always kept pretty warm (low 20s I think), to protect the wood, and they turn up the temperature again, to 27°C or some-such, for competition - I think thin the air a little more.

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 2 years ago
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Yeah, the three UK ones are climate controlled among other techy things, but I think most people know that. Where as the ones abroad, you may never have heard of

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RobD [293 posts] 2 years ago
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Weren't the French making some claims about the speed of the new velodrome that they're using as their 'hub' in a similar way to british cycling? That could be another possibility, and a pretty exciting way to use it in it's early life.

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Gkam84 [9092 posts] 2 years ago
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The other thing nobody is mentioning, including Trek...Is he going for the UCI Hour Record (standard kit, no TT helmets, no disc wheels, no aero bars and has to be a standard road frame.

Or, is he going for the Best Human Record (UCI Absolute Record), where you can use whatever the hell you like

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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He was planning on trying it on the velodrome at Welwyn but there weren't enough bins......