Great Britain’s junior men bounced back from a snapped chain for Tao Geoghegan Hart to finish with a seventh place for Scott Davies in the junior men’s road race at the 2013 world championships in Florence.
Geoghegan Hart, Britain’s plan A for the race, was forced to run with his bike on the third of five times up the Florence circuit’s steep Via Salviati climb, losing over a minute and a half as he waited for a replacement bike.
Nevertheless Davies, who recently won the Junior Tour of Wales, kept in touch with the chase group behind race winner Mathieu Van der Poel for seventh; a pleasing result, even if it was tinged with a bit of disappointment.
“I’m not a sprinter but I think that was the best sprint I’ve ever done in my life,” the 18 year-old Welshman told Cycling Weekly.
“Originally the plan was to work for Tao but he had that mechanical and there was nothing I could do for him. I really felt for him because I know how much he wanted this, but it’s just one of those things.
“I’m pretty relieved to get a decent result, but it would have been nice to get a podium.”
Geoghegan Hart chased to regain contact with the main bunch but couldn’t close the final 20 second gap, throwing up on his bike and eventually crossing the line with his Great Britain teammates Matt Gibson and James Knox, 3-46 down on the winner.
“The race was going perfectly,” a dejected Geoghegan Hart said at the finish. “I was feeling amazing, probably the best I’ve felt all year.
“It [the mechanical] was worst possible timing because the bunch was completely strung out so I had to wait a minute and a half [to get a new bike]. I ran up the climb as fast as I could to get a new bike.
“That’s the beauty of this sport isn’t it, anything can happen. This is my last race of the year and it’s a shame to end juniors this way but that’s what happens and Scott salvaged a good result out of it. I’m pleased for him, and for me I’m just looking forward.”