Wow, a Swiss champion on Swiss soil, err, roads. Is there any important time trial that Fabian Cancellara hasn’t won in the last year? Like Mark Cavendish in the sprint, Cancellara is on another physiological level. It just may be time to grab the scalpel, cut him open and find out what’s inside. For the benefit of science and mankind and slow pedaling cyclists everywhere. Or we could just ask his Saxo Bank mastermind Bjarne Riis — Fabian might prefer that approach.
Competitors wake up knowing second place is the best they can hope for. The man they call Spartacus is so much stronger than the others that he could basically ride in a wool toga flapping in the wind and Roman sandals. Race directors might need to impose a weight penalty to give the others a chance — maybe make him carry two six packs of Eichhof beer on his back. Which by the way they call the Swiss Power Beer.
Fabulous Fabian blitzed the 49.8 kilometer course in 57:54. A full 1:27 faster than Gustav Larsson (Sweden). Germany’s Tony Martin took the third podium spot, 2:30 back. The man was so far ahead he had time to drop back into 2nd gear, soak in the vibe and get his post-race quotes together. And crack open one of those aforementioned Eichhof beers. Just kidding.
A crowd of 23,000 cheered Cancellara on — we’re assuming it was about 22,999 Swiss fans. He went out the gate fast, went faster, added more fast and zoomed to a dominating win. Second place Larsson tried to draft when Fabian blew by but to no avail.
Expectations were high for Bradley Wiggins until a chain problem ended his chances. Last years’ Worlds TT champion, Bert Grabsch could only manage 10th place. And uhh, they don’t have a podium spot for that. Maybe a gift assortment of Swiss chocolates. Best placed American Tom Zirbel surprised many with a terrific ride, just 17 seconds from claiming 3rd place.
It was Fabian Cancellara’s day in Mendrisio. He proved once again that he will win any race that has a clock that goes tick-tick-tick.