American Amber Neben won the gold medal in the women’s time trial today at the Pan American Road and Track Championships Mar Del Plata, Argentina. Canada’s Rhae Shaw was second.
Neben who races for the Specialized-lululemon trade team clocked 26:60.096 on the out-and-back 20km course besting Shaw, of Exergy Twenty12, who posted 27:47.38. Brazil’s Clemencia Da Silva with a time of 27:67.000.
The flat out and back course was “super windy” according to Neben who completed the return leg of the course six minutes faster than the way out.
“I’m really excited with this win,” commented former World Time Trial Champion Neben in her team’s press release. “I’m very focused on the time trial at the moment being an Olympic season and this is a great start to the season for me.”
“I’m really excited to have brought home the silver medal back to Canada. It’s my first International Championship medal,” Shaw said to the CCA after the race. “It was really windy out on the course, a very difficult ride and I gave it my all. For my first time trial of the year, it’s a good indicator that training is going well and we learned a lot today to continue to improve.”
“I’d like to thank the staff for all their help,” added Shaw who came in seventh in the individual time trial at the 2011 UCI Road World Championships in Denmark. Neben was eighth in the same World TT Championships won by Judith Arndt (Germany).
The other Canadian at the event, Denise Ramsden, of Optum Pro Cycling p/b KBS, crossed the finish line with a time 29 :37.94 to take 6th place.
Americans Nathan Brown and Lawson Craddock finished second and third respectively in the under23 men’s time trial won by Eduardo Selpulveda of Argentina. Canada did not send a men’s team. Sepulveda’s fastest time was 50:39:58, Brown clocked 51:27:78 and Craddock 51:55:83.
The Pan-American cycling championships end on Sunday with the mass-start road race. The USA will be represented by Neben, Coryn Rivera (Exergy TWENTY12), Shelley Olds (AA Drink) and Beth Newell (NOW and Novartis for MS). Canada’s six rider team includes Shaw, Ramsden, Leah Kirchmann (Optum-KBS), Karol-Ann Canuel, Heather Logan-Sprenger (Exergy Twenty12) and Joanie Caron.
Also on Sunday is the men’s road race where a young American squad of Craddock and Brown (both Trek-Livestrong), Ty Magner (TT1), Rob Bush (Chipotle Development Team), and Matthew Lipscomb (Hincapie Development Team) will toe the line. Canada is not fielding a men’s team because the men’s Olympic qualification window is already closed.