Originally written on Triple Crankset  |  Last updated 10/7/14

Scorching heat set the tone for today's Amgen Tour of California Women's Invitational Time Trial. The terrain was relentless giving no rest for the riders on the challenging 18.4 mile (29.7km) course. This was a true test of fitness today. With the Olympic selection looming, Kristin Armstrong took this opportunity to race over a full distance time trial course, similar to that of a World Championship or Olympic course, there are very few opportunities to do this in women's racing. Armstrong was joined by current U23 National Time Trail Champion, Tayler Wiles and Alison Tetrick.

Riders set off at minute intervals in windy hot conditions, the pavement sticky with melting asphalt and the wind blowing like a hot hairdryer. "No free speed on this course," mentioned Armstrong after the race. After the turnaround, Armstrong's endurance began to show, she passed several of her competitors as they began to fade on the demanding course. With a strong finish she sprinted for the line with almost 1:25 back from her nearest competitor Alison Powers. Armstrong's sub 40 minute ride would have placed her 63rd in the men's field.

"I am very pleased with my result, each time trial I approach just as if it were a World Championship, the same preparation, the same focus," commented Armstrong. "Today was no different. This was one of the hardest courses and conditions I’ve done in my 10-year career. The heat was really hard and real heavy. The road was recently repaved and black as black so the heat that came off of that was really hard. It was a true time trial course. A true test of fitness, and I think the strongest person won.”

Armstrong continued, “Having AEG and Amgen bring women in for the time trial, I can’t even thank them enough. It’s so awesome to put women on the same stage as the men. It’s really nice to mix the men and women. I do a lot of World Cups in Europe and just the hype…I really appreciate what everyone has done and all the sponsors that have backed it.”

Results - 2012 Amgen Tour of California Women's Time Trial Race
1. Kristin Armstrong (Exergy TWENTY12) - 39:59.28
2. Alison Powers (NOW and Novartis for MS) 41:23.88
3. Jade Wilcoxson (Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefits Strategies) - 41:58.08
4. Alison Tetrick (Exergy TWENTY12) - 42:09.68
5. Robin Farina (NOW and Novartis for MS) - 42:32.92
6. Tayler Wiles (Exergy TWENTY12) - 43:40.40
7. Emilia Fahlin (Specialized-Lululemon) - 43:42.02
8. Janel Holcomb (Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefits Strategies) - 44:12.46
9. Loren Rowney (Specialized-Lululemon) - 44:15.59
10. Bridie O'Donnell (Vanderkitten-Focus) - 44:23.34

Photos: Wil Matthews (top); Greg Erwin (bottom)

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