September 24, 2017 (Bergen, Norway) – Guillaume Boivin from Montreal, Quebec, led the Canadian charge in the Elite men’s 267.5 kilometre road race finishing 35th as the 2017 Road World Championships concluded on Sunday in Bergen, Norway.
The finale featured a historic result as Peter Sagan of Slovakia won his third consecutive title setting a record as he edged out Norwegian star, Alexander Kristoff, at the line in a photo finish with Michael Matthews (Australia) taking third.
Fellow Canadians Hugo Houle of Sainte-Perpetue, Quebec, and Antoine Duchesne of Saguenay, Quebec finished 81st and 120th respectively working hard for Boivin throughout the race to set him up for the final push to contend at the finish.
“I think for the most part it went to plan,” said Kevin Field, Road Team Manager, “and I was really happy with how the guys rode. We realized after a few races that the course is a lot more difficult than we expected coming in, and to have our three guys right up there on the last lap, that’s an impressive ride for us. Guillaume was very, very close, and that’s a really good performance for our guys.”
Jacques Landry, Chief Technical Officer at Cycling Canada, commented, “Reflecting on the Elite men and women, we have all the bases covered, I think, to prepare our riders for Road Worlds. The programs they have are obviously through their trade teams, but we had good team cohesiveness and tactics. For the Junior and Under-23 categories, to really be competitive we would need to step up our programs considerably through training camps and racing in Europe.
“We have some exceptions, like Simone Boilard [8th, Junior women road race], but we need to be developing more riders like Simone, and not counting on phenoms just showing up. I do strongly believe that the track endurance program is the way to get things going to fast track these athletes into the road scene; we see it through other countries, such as Great Britain and Australia. There’s some work to do, but we have a lot of talent and we just need to find the resources and the most efficient pathway to develop these athletes properly.”
Watch final 5 min here.