Tony Martin: “This jersey means a lot for me”
After giving time to the emotion of winning the world title sink in, the 31-year-old talked of Wednesday's race and his historic feat.
Tony Martin is back to the top of the world after "two tough years, in which I couldn't show my real level in the time trial". The German powerhouse dominated the 40km-long race in Qatar, leading through both intermediate points, before taking a comfortable win which netted him at the end of the day the rainbow stripes for the fourth time in his career.
"I didn't really expect to get the victory yesterday. I wanted to go for the title and I was relaxed right from the start, had a clear plan and was focused on finding my own rhythm. I wasn't interested in the split times of the other riders, just in sticking to my plan. When I got news that I have the best time at the first checkpoint, it gave me huge confidence, because I wasn't going full gas", said Tony, who now has to his name seven gold medals at the World Championships (four in the individual event and three with the team).
The German produced an incredible ride and concluded the race in 44:42, for a jaw-dropping average speed of 53.691 km/h, replicating the form he displayed between 2011 and 2013, when he won the World Championships at every attempt. Tony credited his training sessions with Etixx – Quick-Step and the return to his old position on the bike for his success in Doha.
What I learned with Etixx – Quick-Step while preparing in Belgium and here helped me a lot in terms of discovering the course and dealing with the heat, and I don't think the victory would have been possible without this.
"Another important aspect was to go back to the old position on the bike, which gave me a huge degree of confidence. Everybody around me said I was a completely different rider compared to the last months", added Tony, who scored in Doha his 27th individual time trial win since joining Etixx – Quick-Step. "This victory is the second best of my four at the World Championships, after the first one, and to have again the jersey on my shoulders means a lot for me."
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele