Filippo Ganna to attempt to break Hour Record in October

Italian will attempt to break 55.548km distance set by Dan Bigham

Filippo Ganna
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Filippo Ganna is set to target the Hour Record next month, it was announced by his Ineos Grenadiers team on Friday morning.

The Italian two-time time trial world champion will attempt to break the 55.548km distance set by Dan Bigham at the Tissot Velodrome in Grenchen, Switzerland, on 8 October, at 8pm local time.

The Hour Record has been a long-rumoured goal for the Italian, who has dominated time trials in recent years, winning 20 events on the road in his career so far. He has also won multiple medals on the track, and holds the record for both the individual and team pursuits.

In the statement released on Friday, Ganna said that the attempt is an "important step" in his career.

 “I’m looking forward to the challenge, even though it’s going to be an hour of pure suffering," the 26-year-old said. "It will be interesting to see how my body holds up, and just how far I can go - it’s a chance to really test your physical and mental limits. To undertake a prestigious event like this is an important step in my career.”

The record was broken in August by Bigham, who works as a performance engineer for Ineos Grenadiers at the same velodrome. It was an endeavour that was seemingly a test ahead of Ganna's go at the record, although he did beat the previous record, set by Victor Campenaerts, by almost 500m.

At the time Bigham described his record-breaking ride as "bit mind blowing" and "pretty epic".

Ganna spoke of his excitement of using the new equipment developed specially for the Hour Record attempts.

"I have been training on the new Pinarello bike and it’s super-fast – I love it," he said. It’s another step on from the already high level we have with our equipment. 

"The team puts so much energy and effort into these projects, and our partners, from Pinarello and the new prototype bike, to a fully customised skinsuit made by Bioracer - they’ve done their part so now it’s my turn. I’m going to feel really good stepping into that velodrome. Mentally that’ll already give me some extra metres.”

Rod Ellingworth, Ineos' deputy team principal, said that nothing has been left to chance in the run up to Ganna's bid at the Hour Record.

“We have been building towards this exciting event during the last year," he said. "There have been so many layers of thought gone into the planning of this event so we can ensure Filippo arrives at the start line in Switzerland with the best equipment for the greatest chance of success. 

"When it comes to taking on events like this we leave nothing to chance - constantly refining what and how we do things is part of the genetic makeup of the Ineos Grenadiers team. It’s inspiring to work alongside some of the best brains in the business. It’s that kind of care and consideration that shows our athletes how much we want them to do well.” 

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Adam Becket
Senior news and features writer

Adam is Cycling Weekly’s senior news and feature writer – his greatest love is road racing but as long as he is cycling on tarmac, he's happy. Before joining Cycling Weekly he spent two years writing for Procycling, where he interviewed riders and wrote about racing, speaking to people as varied as Demi Vollering to Philippe Gilbert. Before cycling took over his professional life, he covered ecclesiastical matters at the world’s largest Anglican newspaper and politics at Business Insider. Don't ask how that is related to cycling.