Cyclist Keagan Girdlestone turned in the best of South Africa’s junior performances when he just missed a medal in the under-23 individual time-trial at the UCI Road World Championships in Richmond, USA, yesterday.
An international contingent of 57 riders took on the 30km route, which saw Germany’s Leo Appelt clock the fastest time of 37:45 for the gold medal.
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After a nail-biting wait, the final rider of the day, American Adrien Costa, finished 17 seconds slower than Appelt to bump his fellow countryman Brandon McNulty (38:44) down to bronze and Girdlestone (38:52) off the podium.
Girdlestone said it had been a particularly testing course.
“It definitely wore you out with bumpy roads and many corners so it was tough to keep a good rhythm.
“My first lap was pretty good but I definitely felt the fatigue kick in on the second lap.”
The 18-year-old, who now lives in New Zealand, has been on good form this season, winning both the UCI 2.1-rated Tour du Valromey and Ronde des Vallées.
“I won some non-UCI races but they were pretty prestigious races, which is good for my confidence,” said Girdlestone.