Victor Campenaerts says Alex Dowsett has a '50 per cent chance of beating the Hour Record'

British time trial champion Dowsett plans to attempt to break the record in Manchester on December 12

Victor Campenaerts (Photo by Luc Claessen/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Victor Campenaerts, the current Hour Record holder, says he thinks Alex Dowsett has a 50 per cent chance of beating his record next month.

Campernaerts (NTT Pro Cycling) set a record of 55.089km last year at the Aguascalientes Bicentenary Velodrome in Mexico, beating Sir Bradley Wiggins record of 54.526km.

Dowsett has announced he will try to reclaim the prestigious title at the Manchester Velodrome on December 12.

The former Belgian national time trial champion says Dowsett (Israel Start-Up Nation) choosing Manchester maybe prove to be the wrong decision.

"The air pressure makes or breaks an hour record attempt," Campenaerts told Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad. 

"I am not a climatologist, but in Mexico the air pressure is almost constant every day.

"In Belgium or the United Kingdom, the temperature fluctuates day after day. If he has a breakdown on December 12 and there is high air pressure, I fear it will be an impossible attempt.

“I think he has a 50 per cent chance of breaking the record. I'm glad someone finally dares to do it.”

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Campenaerts recently beat Dowsett in all three time trials at the Giro d'Italia, with Dowsett putting in some disappointing rides against the clock but taking a stage win on the road.

NTT's star time trial rider Campenaerts says that he chatted about the record a lot with Dowsett at the Giro: "In the last Giro d'Italia we were still talking about the Hour Record. I get along well with Alex.

"I like him, but I can't give too many tips either. He is a competitor that can take away my greatest achievement as a cyclist. If he takes my record, I plan another attack in the short term."

Alex Dowsett during the European Time Trial Championships (Photo by Luc Claessen/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The main advantage Dowsett has over the Belgian is that the British rider can choose his own equipment, which is something he has done in TTs in the European and World championships, riding a Specialized bike and wearing a POC helmet instead of his standard team equipment.

Campenaerts says this is a "big advantage" but it won't be easy for Dowsett. Campenaerts says he will be sad to lose it but he will have beaten fairly with the record not being obliterated: "That would be a bit painful [losing to Dowsett], but I honestly don't believe in that. Alex faces a tough challenge. It would be sad for me if it wasn't."

Tim Bonville-Ginn
Tim Bonville-Ginn

Tim Bonville-Ginn is one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter.

Bonville-Ginn started working in cycling journalism while still at school and university for a voluntary site based on Twitter before also doing slots for Eurosport's online web team and has been on location at the Tour de Yorkshire, Tour of Britain, UCI World Championships and various track events. He then joined the Cycling Weekly team in late February of 2020.

When not writing stories for the site, Bonville-Ginn doesn't really switch off his cycling side as he watches every race that is televised as well as being a rider himself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager.

He rides a Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on his local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being his preferred terrain.