Sky professional Alex Dowsett smashed the record for the E1/25 course in Lea Valley CC’s 25-mile time trial on Sunday, beating the former best time by three and a half minutes.

Dowsett set a time of 49 minutes and 40 seconds on the E1/25 course, beating the previous marker for the course of 53 minutes and 11 seconds set by Matt Illingworth in 1999.

The course is far from a superfast, out-and-back dual carriageway dragstrip, taking in mainly single-carriageway B-roads twisting through villages. Any rider posting a sub-hour time is considered to be going well.

Second behind Dowsett on Sunday was Tim Davies (Icknield RC) with 56-43, with Chris Rimes (Fenland Clarion) third fastest with 57-21.

Dowsett was using the weekend’s racing as a training exercise for forthcoming races on the continent – he lines up for Sky in the Criterum International in Corsica over March 26-27. The last of the race’s three stages is a 7km individual time trial.

Last year Dowsett won a silver medal in the Commonwealth Games time trial, Delhi – the only rider to come home within a minute behind winner David Millar (Garmin). The 22 year old from Essex also won the European under-23 time trial title and the Chrono des Nations under-23 time trial.

Dowsett signed a full professional contract with British-based WorldTour squad Sky at the end of last season, having previously ridden for the US Trek-Livestrong development team and British Cycling’s Olympic Academy.

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Alex Dowsett: Rider profile