Sarah Storey retains Paracycling Road Worlds time trial title

By Ollie WilliamsBBC Sport in Roskilde, Denmark
Sarah Storey (middle) on the podium in Denmark
Storey has dominated paracycling's time trial since her victory in Beijing three years ago

Britain's Sarah Storey retained her Paracycling Road World Championships time trial title for a third successive year in Roskilde, Denmark, on Thursday.

Storey, who also competes for Britain's able-bodied team, finished comfortably ahead of Poland's Anna Harkowska.

"It's nice to go into a Paralympic year with a world champion's jersey," Storey told BBC Sport. "I was a bit nervous so it's good to retain the title."

Mark Colbourne won silver for GB in the men's event on his debut at this level.

Welshman Colbourne, 41, broke his back in a paragliding accident two years ago but, having learnt to walk again, recovered to finish second in his category.

"I've only spent four months under the umbrella of GB Paracycling but after my accident I've worked for 18 months to get to this stage," said Colbourne.

"I came out of hospital and found I could actually ride a bike. A door opened for me - I've enjoyed sport from a very young age - and this, for me, is just fantastic.

"I rode the course time and time again in training, I paced myself for the 15km, and even though it was very windy today I felt everything went perfectly to plan.

"Having achieved this after four months is breathtaking. Coming from a near-fatal accident is a dream come true and I dedicate this to my daughter, Jessica."

Shaun McKeown and Karen Darke also took bronze medals on the first of four days of racing in Denmark.

The time trials - over distances ranging from 15km to 30km, depending on the athlete's level of disability, conclude on Friday, with road races from 30km to 107km on Saturday and Sunday.

Storey is widely tipped to win her second Paralympic title on the Brands Hatch circuit next summer having taken time trial gold in Beijing three years ago, an expectation reinforced by Thursday's victory.

She also hopes to compete at the Olympics as part of the British track cycling team, and won gold in the women's team pursuit at a Track World Cup event in her home town of Manchester earlier this year.

"It's important to put down a strong marker and try to win the race by the biggest possible margin, for the biggest psychological advantage going into London," said the 33-year-old.

"I had a few issues with cars not getting out of the way and had to take a few risks to get around a string of cars but it's all part of the job, really.

"I'll be back on the track next Wednesday. If you're going to be a track and road rider, you don't really get an off-season.

"I have to consistently perform to make the team pursuit squad, and on the road I have to consistently perform to keep the training going in the right direction."