Greenville, USA, 31 August 2014 —- Alessandro Zanardi continues to be on winning ways at the UCI Para-Cycling World Championship in Greenville, South Carolina, USA. Two days after being crowned world champion with the Italian national team in the team-relay, he now celebrated another success. The BMW Brand Ambassador and BMW works driver successfully defended his world-title in the time trial in the MH5 category (men’s hand-cycle).
On Saturday, the para-athletes tackled an 8.3 kilometre course near Greenville. For the time-trial, two laps had to be completed, making the total distance 16.6 kilometres. Zanardi once more proved to be unbeatable with his hand-cycle. He completed the distance in 25:21.98 minutes, winning the race with an advantage of nearly 31 seconds to second-placed Ernst van Dyk of South Africa. In doing so, Zanardi secured his second-consecutive world-title in this discipline.
“I am extremely happy. To be honest, in the morning I felt confident regarding my own performance because I knew that I prepared very well for this event, but I feared that it would not be enough,” Zanardi said. “I knew that my opponents are very, very strong and that it would be tough just to get a medal today. You cannot always win, so my approach for the race was to just give my very best. Luckily, it was sufficient once more to become world champion and I am really happy. We will have another big race on Monday, but to have won today is already great and I could not have asked for more. On top of things, it is the 50th gold medal for our coach Mario Valentini who is sort of a second father for me and I am so pleased to be the one to secure this special gold medal for him.”
On Monday (1 September), Zanardi will compete in his third and final race of the 2014 Para-Cycling World Championship. He will compete in the road-race, trying to defend his world-title in this discipline, too.
[Source : BMW Group]