By Gregor Brown
Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) could help continue a new round of hour record attempts. The time trial world champion said that if Fabian Cancellara (Radioshack) tries then he would also be tempted.
"My rivals Fabian Cancellara and Bradley Wiggins talk about the hour record," Martin told Thüringer Allgemeine. "I also have it in mind. Being the fastest man in the world would be a nice title to have."
The German cautioned that anther time trial world title and the 2016 Olympics occupy a higher priority. However, as many hoped, Cancellara's plans sparked his interest.
The hour record has been on the back-burner for many years. Since the UCI created new rules and rolled back the record to Eddy Merckx's 1972 distance of 49.431 kilometres, only two have succeeded: Chris Boardman (2000) and Ondřej Sosenka (2005). It's hardly like the golden days when everyone from Fausto Coppi to Miguel Indurain was having a go.
"It's a good thing for cycling to have a big name going for the record," team Radioshack's general manager, Luca Guercilena told Cycling Weekly. "Given that Fabian's the most experienced, pro since 2001, if he tries then his attempt will send a message to the other cyclists. It'd be good for cycling and for track racing. The big names need to return to the track and go for one of cycling's important gems."
Guercilena said that he and Cancellara are talking about when and where they can attempt the record. By the end of the year he said that they would decide if he will try it and schedule it on the calendar.
"It's not easy to find time when you are racing 12 months a year. It's hard to find time away from the road events to dedicate to the track," Guercilena added. "We need to try to insert in the season when he has a peak in form that he can transfer from the road to the track."
He said the most likely time would be after the Classics, in late April or after one of the Grand Tours. It may even happen in Manchester. "We need to think of a track that is around Europe, we can't afford a month and a half far away from Europe."
In the September issue of Bici Sport magazine, Wiggins said that he wants to try to break the hour record as well. He said that he would like to try at home in London's Olympic Park.
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