Hour Record

Filippo Ganna on his way to breaking the World Hour Record at Grenchen, Switzerland October 2022

Filippo Ganna on his way to breaking the World Hour Record in Grenchen, Switzerland in October 2022 (Image credit: Valentin Flauraud / Getty Images)

Current men's holder: Filippo Ganna (56.792km)

Vittoria Bussi after completing the UCI Hour Record

Vittoria Bussi became the first woman to break the 50km barrier in October 2023 (Image credit: Tania Marquez / UCI)

Current women's holder: Vittoria Bussi (50.267km)

The Hour record is one of the most prestigious records in cycling with roots dating back to 1893 when it was set by Henri Desgrange, the man who would go on to create and run the Tour de France. In the mid 1990s the record was repeatedly broken on increasingly advanced equipment forcing the sports governing body, the UCI, in to creating a set of regulations that stifled record attempts and confused the record books.

>>> View timeline of the Hour record

The record was effectively reset in May 2014, when the UCI standardised the equipment regulations, bringing them inline with Olympic track cycling, and announcing the current record of 49.7km (previously called the 'athletes hour' as it was set on equipment similar to that used by Eddy Merckx in 1972) would stand as the mark to beat.

Fabian Cancellara had expressed interest in attacking the record, but his challenge thus far has not materialised. Instead, his retiring team mate Jens Voigt successfully set a new record of 51.115km in Switzerland on September 18 2014, followed six weeks later by Matthias Brändle's mark of 51.850km set on October 30. After Jack Bobridge's unsuccessful attempt at the end of January 2015, his Australian compatriot Rohan Dennis successfully set a new mark of 52.491km on February 8.

Britain's Alex Dowsett was the next to take up the mantle, and after having to postpone an initial attempt in February 2015, Dowsett successfully broke Dennis's record by over 400 metres, setting a distance of 52.937 at the Manchester velodrome on May 2.

Bradley Wiggins during his Hour Record attempt

Bradley Wiggins during his Hour Record attempt

Then World and Olympic time trial champion Sir Bradley Wiggins then increased the record to 54.526km in London on June 7 2015.

Then, on April 16, Belgian Victor Campenaerts, took to the Aguascalientes velodrome in Mexico, setting a distance of 55.089km to better Wiggins' record by 563 metres, far surpassing his aim of 300 metres.

Hour record

Filippo Ganna (Ita) 56.792km Switzerland, 8/10/2022

Dan Bigham (GBr) 55.548km Switzerland, 19/8/2022

Victor Campenaerts (Bel) 55.089km Mexico, 16/4/19

Sir Bradley Wiggins (GBr) 54.526km London, 7/6/2015

Alex Dowsett (GBr) 52.937km Manchester, 2/5/2015

Rohan Dennis (Aus) 52.491km Switzerland, 8/2/2015

Matthias Brändle (Aut) 51.852km Switzerland, 30/10/2014

Jens Voigt (Ger) 51.115km Switzerland, 18/09/2014

Ondrej Sosenka (Cze) 49.700km Moscow, 19/07/2005

Chris Boardman (GBr) 49.441km Manchester, 27/10/2000

------------ All records below set prior to the Lugano Charter ------------

Chris Boardman (GBr) 56.375km Manchester, 06/09/1996*

Tony Rominger (Sui) 55.291km Bordeaux, 05/11/1994

Tony Rominger (Sui) 53.832km Bordeaux, 22/10/1994

Miguel Indurain (Spa) 53.040km Bordeaux, 02/09/1994

Graeme Obree (GBr) 52.719km Bordeaux, 27/04/1994*

Chris Boardman (GBr) 52.270km Bordeaux, 23/07/1993

Francesco Moser (Ita) 51.840km Mexico, 15/01/1994

Graeme Obree (GBr) 51.596km Hamar, 17/07/1993†

*Superman position

†Tuck position

Source: UCI

Women's Hour Record

The Women's Hour Record also saw a renewed interest following the 2014 rule change.

Hour record ellen van dijk

Van Dijk set a new Women's Hour Record of 49.254km in May 23, 2022 (Image credit: GABRIEL MONNET/AFP via Getty Images)

Up until that point, the reigning champion had been Leontien van Moorsel, who completed 46.065km in October 2003.

Following the rule change, multiple Paralympic Champion Sarah Storey announced her intention to target the record - attempting the feat on February 28 2015 at Lee Valley Velodrome. She set new British, Para-Cycling and Masters (age 35-39) records, but missed the overall by 563m - covering 45.502km in total.

On September 12 2015, US rider Molly Shaffer Van Houweling broke the record, covering 46.273km. She was bettered in October 2015, by Australian rider Bridie O'Donnell who achieved 46.882km at the Adelaide Super-Drome. Then, Evelyn Stevens covered 47.980km in Colarado Springs in February 2016.

The current record holder, Ellen van Dijk, covered 49.254km on May 23, 2022, at Grenchen velodrome. She took the record from the UK's Joss Lowden, who managed 48.405km on September 30, 2021.

Women's Hour Record results

Vittoria Bussi (Ita) 50.267km, Mexico, 13.10.2023

Ellen van Dijk (Ned) 49.254km, Grenchen velodrome, 23.5.2022

Joscelin Lowden (UK), 48.405km, Grenchen velodrome, 30.9.2021

Evelyn Stevens (USA), 47.980km, Colarado Springs, 27.02.2016

Bridie O'Donnell (Aus), 46.882km, Adelaide, 22.01.2016

Molly Shaffer-Van Houweling (USA), 46.273km, Mexico, 12.09.2015

Leontien Ziklaard-Van Moorsel (Ned), 46.065km, Mexico, 01.10.2003

Jeannie Longo-Cirprelli (Fra), 45.094km, Mexico, 07.12.2000

Jeannie Longo-Cirprelli (Fra), 44.767km, Mexico, 05.11.2000

Anna Wilson (Aus), 43.501km, Melbourne, 18.10.2000

------------ All records below set prior to the Lugano Charter ------------

Jeannie Longo-Cirprelli (Fra), 48.159km, Mexico, 26.10.1996

Yvonne McGregor (Gbr), 47.411km, Manchester, 17.06.1995

Catherine Marsal (Fra), 47.112km, Bordeaux, 29.04.1995

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 46.352km, Mexico, 01.10.1989

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 45.016km, Moscow, 29.10.1989

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 44.933km, Colorado, 22.09.1987

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 44.770km, Colorado, 20.09.1986

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 44.718km, Grenoble, 07.11.1986

Jeanni Longo (Fra), 43.588km, Milan, 30.09.1986

Cornelia Van Oosten-Hage (Ned), 43.093km, Munich, 25.11.1985

Barbara Ganz (Sui), 42.319km, Zurich, 25.11.1985

Maria Cressari (Ita), 41.472km, Mexico, 25.11.1972

Elsy Jacobs (Lux), 41.347km, Milan, 09.11.1958

Olga Sidorenko (URS), 41.087km, Moscow, 20.10.1982

Millie Robinson (Gbr), 39.719km, Milan, 25.09.1058

Renee Vissac (Fra), 38.569km, Milan, 18.09.1957

Tamara Novikova (URS), 38.473km, Irkoutsk, 07.07.1955