Posted by Editoress on 08/20/10
Report and photos from the first day of racing at the Para-cycling Road World Championships in Baie-Comeau, Quebec
Canada’s Robert Labbé won the bronze medal in the Individual Time Trial as the 2010 UCI Para-Cycling Road World Championships opened on Thursday in Baie-Comeau, Quebec. Labbé, the defending champion in that discipline, competed in the Men’s H1 (Handcycle) category.
"It’s a good start to these Championships. I was aiming for a podium and I am very happy with the medal. It is disappointing to lose the title, but this course was very hard with a big climb, and did not suit me as much as last year. I'm racing again on Saturday in the road race, and I will try to do better then. I will aim to win the world title in the road race."
"There is lots of people supporting us and the event, the atmosphere is very good and the course is challenging with the huge Côte Saint-Georges climb (8%) to surpass, which is the biggest challenge.”
In the Men’s H2, Mark Beggs placed in sixth and Rico Morneau finished in 12th position, while Mark Ledo finished 5th in H3. For three it was a strong improvement over previous results.
Marie-Claude Molnar was the first Canadian to compete in this world championships, in the women's C4 category. Molnar came third of her group of three, 17 seconds behind the winner, Megan Fisher of the United States. (Note: Molnar did not receive a medal, since there were only three competitors in her class)
"This is an excellent third place. I am very pleased, because there has been very good improvements in comparison with last world championships. Last year I was three minutes behind the second place, and this year I'm only 13 seconds behind," said Molnar, who is in her second year on the Canadian Para-cycling team.
"We had the opportunity to meet Dr. Pierre Beauchamp, a sports psychologist at the preparation camp in Bromont. I worked with him to help me find tools to better prepare myself for the race, and it really helped me a lot today,” added Molnar.
Shelley Gauthier, attending her first World Championships, was the lone racer in T1 category (Tricycles). Gauthier hopes to become the first Canadian female to compete in the Trike category at the 2012 Paralympic Games.
“There were lots of hills and lots of pedalling. I just concentrated on getting out there and pedalling, and I did very well. My goal was to do it in good form, and remember all the things I have learned about cycling. I was racing against myself, so I had to beat my training time, with I did by over a minute, said Gauthier.
The Para-Worlds continue Friday with Individual Time Trials, followed by the Road Races on Saturday and Sunday.
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