In the penultimate race of her 18-year career, Judith Arndt successfully defended the rainbow jersey to earn back-to-back individual time trial world titles. The German covered the 24.1 kilometer course in 32:26, setting a blistering pace of 45 kilometers per hour to win by a commanding 34 seconds.
“I am very proud of today’s race,” said Arndt. “I tried to do a perfect race, and it pretty much worked out as planned. I wanted to start fast as that has been a weakness of mine in the past. Today’s race was quite short and had a tailwind, so a fast start was critical.”
“I also went full on in the section before the descent into Valkenburg,” Ardnt added. “With the Cauberg only two kilometers from the finish, we neded to go flat out after the climb, too. Mentally, you have to deal with that to win on a course like today’s.”
It is the third gold medal at Road World Championships for Arndt who won time trial gold last year and the road title in 2004. She ends her career on Saturday with the road race in Valkenburg.
“I am very grateful to everyone who has supported me this year,” said Arndt. “And I’m grateful for the support I’ve received throughout my whole career.”
Arndt stood on the podium with her ORICA-AIS teammate Linda Villumsen. The New Zealand national claimed the final step of the podium. Villumsen’s bronze medal represents her fourth consecutive medal in the individual time trial at Road World Championships. American Evelyn Stevens took silver with a time seven seconds faster than Villumsen.
“I’m very happy for Linda,” noted Arndt. “She’s a little superstar and a good teammate.”
Shara Gillow gave ORICA-AIS three riders in the top-ten in Holland. The only Australian to contest the time trial, Gillow slotted into tenth place.
Arndt, Villumsen and Gillow were all part of the six-rider team time trial squad to claim silver on Sunday. ORICA-AIS has earned four medals – one gold, one silver and one bronze – after two Road World Championship events.