Ryan Mullen takes home his 4th successive title while Anna Plichta races to her first.
Ryan Mullen mounted a successful defense of the Irish time trial title, winning his fourth national championship in the discipline. This year’s Irish Championships were held in Donegal on a mostly-flat 41.5km out-and-back course, with just a couple of bumps to overcome.
As defending champion, Ryan was the last rider down the start ramp – it can be an advantage to set off knowing the times to beat, but it also comes with extra pressure to perform, especially having won the previous two editions of the race.
The pressure was no bother for Ryan and he stopped the clock 52 seconds ahead of his biggest rival, Eddie Dunbar of Team Ineos.
The race itself wasn’t the only difficulty faced by Ryan. It took a lot of last-minute organization to secure a bike to ride after his own Speed Concept was misplaced by an airline one day before the race.
I am proud to have defended my national TT title, especially since it wasn't the smoothest 24 hours lead-in with a travel day of doom and not getting my road or time trial bike. Thanks to everyone who helped me get set up. It's finally nice to win a race in 2019!
For the first time, Anna Plichta was crowned National Time Trial Champion. In fact, it was her first medal in the race of truth at the Polish National Championships, and she put in a dominant performance over the 22-kilometer course to finish one minute and one second ahead of last year’s winner Malgorzata Jasinska (Movistar).
I am really, really happy especially since for a few years I have been quite good in the time trial, but I have never had this title; it was really an amazing day for me. I also had my parents here, so that made it even more special and I could share my happiness with them. I am also happy to bring this jersey to the team – when I was riding today I was all the time thinking of the team and my teammates and how they have believed in me and supported me all year. It kept me motivated.
The time trial championship was run on the same course as the previous year, and Plichta sent her file from her 4th place finish in 2017 to her coach Mattias Reck (Trainer, Trek-Segafredo). They discussed the power she needed to hold and how tactically to ride the two-lap course, and Plichta implemented the plan perfectly to capture her first ever title.
I came here and I knew I was really able to fight for a medal, and I knew that I was in good shape. I knew after the first lap that if I could hold the power to the end it would be a really good time. The conditions were super hard - it was windy and open - but it was good for me and I made it.
Both Mullen and Plichta will race their National Championships Road Race on Sunday.