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5 Riders to look out for in the WC Men's TT (2012 edition)

Ok, so I did one of these last year when these were all the rage and I’d figured, why not do it again now. So, I’m going to have a look at 5 different time-trialists who may not be big favourites that should do well. I’m limiting myself to not choosing anyone from my previous list (sorry Jon and Jesse) or any of the favourites mentioned in the main article.

1. Wilco Kelderman (Netherlands)

Team: Rabobank Age: 21

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via upload.wikimedia.org

The biggest thing to come out of The Netherlands since windmills if you believe the hype on the CN forums. Regardless, Wilco has one enviable U23 palmares to go with his cool-sounding name. He’s a stage racer who’s also an excellent time-trialist and his battles with Luke Durbridge in the future should make for some entertaining chronos. A quiet year time-trial wise, he made his mark in the Critérium du Dauphiné coming an impressive 4th in the long, 53km TT, 12 seconds better than aforementioned Aussie. Not entirely convinced he has the form to perform well but he has done a lot of racing this year for a neo-pro so he has the base miles in the bank which will help he if is revved and ready. I expect a good showing, kid's got talent but this race will be more for the experience than anything else.

Useless Predictive Placing: 15th-20th

2012 ITT Palmares:

8th Vuelta a Andalucia, Prologue (6 km)

15th Tour de Romandie, Prologue (3.3 km)

46th Tour de Romandie, Stage 5 (16.5 km)

67th Critérium du Dauphiné, Prologue (5.7 km)

4th Critérium du Dauphiné, Stage 4 (53 km)

6th National Championships Netherlands (45.7 km)

19th Tour of Denmark, Stage 5 (14.5 km)

2. Tanel Kangert (Estonia)

Team: Astana Age: 25

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via upload.wikimedia.org

After a few years being a domestique at AG2R, Kangert’s move to Astana has paid fruit, as the budding climber won his first WT stage with a breakaway win at the Tour de Suisse. The Estonian is not a bad time-trialist either, exchanging national titles with Taaramae since 2008. Also at the TdS, he came 6th in the lumpy time-trial there so he shouldn’t be fazed with the climbs on the World’s course. Seeded as the better Estonian, there's faith shown in him from somewhere and with no expectations to do well, especially as the distance may be too much, he may fly under the radar and into a high placing.

Useless Predictive Placing: 23rd

2012 ITT Palmares:

8th Settimana Coppi e Bartali, Stage 5 (14.3 km)

31st Vuelta al Pais Vasco, Stage 6 (18.9 km)

30th Giro d'Italia, Stage 1 (8.7 km)

35th Giro d'Italia, Stage 21 (31.5 km)

31st Tour de Suisse, Stage 1 (7.3 km)

6th Tour de Suisse, Stage 7 (34.3 km)

2nd National Championships Estonia (40 km)

28th Eneco Tour of Benelux, Stage 6 (17.4 km)

8th USA Pro Cycling Challenge, Stage 7 (15.3 km)

3. Kristof Vandewalle (Belgium)

Team: OmegaPharma - Quick Step Age: 27

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via upload.wikimedia.org

Ok, so I’m going to admit that when looking for riders for this, I came across Vandewalle and didn’t even realise he won the Belgian ITT. Perfect for this list! Looking through CQ, 2012 has been his breakthrough year in terms of ITT results, at least in terms of consistency and it was rewarded with the Nats win. Didn’t do a lot in the Vuelta but as an important cog in the OPQS locomotive that dominated the other day there’s no doubt he’s ready for Limburg. So despite Crazy Thomas’ appearance in this race, I think he could be shown up by his lesser-known compatriot!

Useless Predictive Placing: 14th-16th

2012 ITT Palmares:

5th Tour de Romandie, Prologue (3.3 km)

2nd Tour of Austria, Stage 7 (24.1 km)

1st National Championships Belgium (41.4 km)

28th Vuelta a España, Stage 11 (39.4 km)

4. Vasil Kiryienka (Belarus)

Team: Movistar Team Age: 31

345px-vasil_kiryienka_2c_london_2012_time_trial_-_aug_2012_medium

via upload.wikimedia.org

Kiryienka is a respected all-round gregario who has been consistent for many years now and the Worlds will be the culmination of a very good year for the Belarusian against the clock. He’s no slouch at the discipline when he’s on form and his eighth placing at the end of the Tour proved he can suffer and still pull out a good time. Raced lightly since then he’s still been able to put in some good performances and he will be another rider who will have no problems with a tougher course than what some time-trialists are used to.

Useless Predictive Placing: 10th-12th

2012 ITT Palmares:

15th Vuelta a Andalucia - Ruta del Sol, Prologue (6 km)

62nd Paris - Nice, Stage 1 (9.4 km)

45th Paris - Nice, Stage 8 (9.5 km)

26th Vuelta al Pais Vasco, Stage 6 (18.9 km)

42nd Tour de Romandie, Prologue (3.3 km)

67th Tour de Romandie, Stage 5 (16.5 km)

28th Critérium du Dauphiné, Prologue (5.7 km)

15th Critérium du Dauphiné, Stage 4 (53 km)

57th Tour de France, Prologue (6.1 km)

50th Tour de France, Stage 9 (41.5 km)

8th Tour de France, Stage 19 (52 km)

12th Olympic Games (44 km)

4th Tour du Poitou Charentes, Stage 4 (22.1 km)

5. Marco Pinotti

Team: BMC Racing Team Age: 36

800px-2011_uci_road_world_championship_-_marco_pinotti_medium

via upload.wikimedia.org

Wow, how’d this guy not get mentioned? Yes, easy out here picking Pinotti here but gottat pick someone who’s good for a medal and he’s seemly a darkhorse with the embarrassment of riches in the other contenders. He’s got to be a big chance of getting a medal this year, especially since two of the Three Kings are out. According to the CQ gnomes he’s had the best season in the time trial out of anyone present bar Tony. He won the Giro time-trial in Milan, won at the Tour of Austria and came 5th at the Olympics so the results are there, even if he may be up against stronger and more determined opposition now. Despite his age I definitely think this is the year for Marco to step up and get his first medal, he may not get the chance again.

Useless Predictive Placing: 2nd-5th

2012 ITT Palmares:

10th Tirreno - Adriatico, Stage 7 (9.3 km)

6th Critérium International, Stage 2 (6.5 km)

4th Vuelta al Pais Vasco, Stage 6 (18.9 km)

8th Giro d'Italia, Stage 1 (8.7 km)

1st Giro d'Italia, Stage 21 (31.5 km)

1st Tour of Austria, Stage 7 (24.1 km)

3rd National Championships Italy (37 km)

5th Olympic Games (44 km)

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