Linda Villumsen claimed New Zealand’s second time trial medal of today with a silver against the clock at the Currumbin Beachfront. Katrin Garfoot of Australia took the gold medal with Villumsen denied a successful title defence by 54 seconds. England’s Hayley Simmonds placed third, with Rushlee Buchanan placing fifth.
After the nice but rather windy conditions that greeted Hamish Bond, James Oram and the men’s race conditions were similarly nice but vicious for the women as they got underway on their 25.5km time trial. Rushlee Buchanan and Linda Villumsen were both fancied to do well, with Buchanan coming off the back of a track campaign in the Anna Meares Velodrome that saw her take her place in the team pursuit outfit that claimed silver behind Australia.
Linda Villumsen’s form was a bit more of an unknown, with the defending champion from Glasgow not having raced on the UCI circuit since the end of January at the Herald Sun Tour. But the defending champion – who was second last to leave the start ramp – quickly set to work putting everything on the line to make her ride a winning one again. Villumsen posted fastest times at both the 10.75km time check and the 20.91km splits, 15 seconds clear of England’s Hayley Simmonds at the first check and same again at check 2.
Across the line Villumsen posted a time of 36.03mins 19 seconds faster than Simmonds and with just Katrin Garfoot to come.
But much like Cameron Meyer in the men’s race, Garfoot was on fire from the off, going another 14 seconds quicker at the first check and a full 46 seconds up at check 2. Eventually Garfoot crossed the line almost 55 seconds faster than Villumsen to claim the gold medal in front of her home crowd. Most impressively from the Australian was that she very nearly caught Villumsen; crossing the line just six seconds after Villumsen briefly slotted into top spot.