Demi Vollering secretly hopes for medal at first World Time Trial Championships

Demi Vollering secretly hopes for medal at first World Time Trial Championships

"The time trial in Glasgow is a discovery tour"


In each of the past world championships and Olympics, time trial gold went to the Netherlands with Anna van der Breggen, Annemiek van Vleuten and Ellen van Dijk. In Glasgow, Demi Vollering faces her first ever major time trial championship. "In a strong time trial country like the Netherlands, participating in the World Time Trial Championships almost seemed like a dream impossible. Now that I have been selected for the first time, I also want to make something beautiful out of it," said Demi Vollering.

Demi Vollering will compete at the World Time Trial Championships for the first time after her overall victory in the Tour de France Femmes. "I found it easy to turn the switch and focus on the World Championships. Unconsciously, after the Tour de France you set yourself up for the upcoming World Championships right away. Of course I am super proud to have won the Tour. That's something that will stay with me for the rest of my life, but it's not like my life has changed. I'm still the same. So I set new goals every time and that includes this World Championships."

The Tour de France Femmes instilled in her a love for time trial. "In the past, I always found it an interesting discipline, but just being selected seemed a mission impossible with competitors like Anna van der Breggen, Annemiek van Vleuten and Ellen van Dijk. So I never focused on it that much. The presence of a time trial in this year's Tour route triggered me to seriously focus on it now. It was a really fun challenge. The adventurer in me was tapped into. My first World Tour time trial in Tour de Suisse went above expectations. That gave me confidence. The NK time trial also went quite well despite a disrupted preparation (Demi Vollering came straight over from the Tour of Switzerland and slept in a camper van on the way). My big goal was the time trial in the Tour and that went well. Secretly I was hoping for a selection for the World Time Trial Championships and I am happy that it worked out."

Vollering starts without pressure in the World Championships ITT. "It is the very first time trial where I will start fresh. I'm still discovering everything a bit. It's quite nice to not 'have to do it' for once. Time trial is simple. You have one chance and you ride as fast as you can from point A to B. Whoever is the fastest wins. It is very fair. Marlen Reusser is the top favourite. She urged me earlier this season to apply myself seriously to time trial. Maybe she regrets that a bit now (laughs). I was already close to her time twice this season, but losing to Marlen is an honour. She is a mega good time trialist."

Every rider has her own way of tackling a time trial. Some make a detailed pacing plan, while others ride completely by feel without a wattage meter. "I'm a bit in between. I don't ride on wattage, but I do have a meter on my Specialized Shiv TT Disc. I ride by feel and during the time trial I occasionally check what wattages I am pedalling. I don't focus on a number that I must necessarily pedal. If you are below it, you think you are not good. If you go faster, you are afraid that you might go too fast and that you will implode. Each rider has to figure out what works best for her. In the end, it's all about feeling your effort to the best of your ability. Hopefully that will be enough for a nice medal on Thursday."

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