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UCI Worlds: Emotional Women's ITT

It's Tuesday night at UCI Worlds in Richmond and we are back to the hotel late after our best and busiest day to date. The plan is to blog every evening about our adventures, but tonight's is going to be a little light. I'm also tweeting, so follow me @GiroJenny for real-time updates.

If you don't have time to read, here's a quick recap of Day 4.

Food: VIP Tent, Lucy's, Strawberry Street Cafe
Bike: Morning ride with local on modified Riverside Drive loop
Races: Junior Men and Elite Women Individual Time Trials
Picks for Tomorrow: Rohan Dennis (AUS)
Best Moment: Dinner with old and new cycling friends
Not the Best Moment: USA women missing out on the podium and last minute arbitration drama for Road Race
Strangest Moment: Leaving a random restaurant with a women's cycling celebrity nowhere near downtown and running into another women's cycling celebrity.
Best Cycling Encounter: Meeting Eddy Merckx

We are really getting into vacation mode. We sleep in, walk over to the VIP tent for breakfast, and spend time in the hotel lobby coming and going talking to friends from the cycling world. This morning we interacted with three of the best cyclists in the world before stepping outside. The one I feel comfortable sharing is the one that has kept Terry smiling all day long. The others were more private, but believe me, cyclists are so approachable and regular people compared to other pro athletes. It's one of the best parts of the sport.

No caption necessary for The Legend

We watched a bit of the Junior Men's ITT, then kitted up and went for a ride. I navigated us out of downtown and toward the Riverside Drive Loop as recommended by local bike shops. About 20 minutes in, a local rider hooked up with us and ended up guiding us the entire morning. Dan completely changed his route to take us on a tour of the University of Richmond (mascot Spiders), river, and some of his secret roads. We couldn't thank him enough and hope to see him at the races later this week.

Dan and Terry keeping the pace high, not much time for photos
Riding back into Downtown Richmond
Happy Campers - ready to shower and cheer on the women!
We went to VIP for lunch and to watch the last of the Junior Men. The USA did it again, with two more medals! The crowds were huge and we didn't want to wait, so grabbed a drink and some snacks and headed to the Start House. I tweeted nonstop from the Start as all the women went through, so won't replay it here. There really is something special about the ITT start that let's you in on the sport. Thanks to all the staff and racers that interacted with the fans, it's really appreciated. Two of my favorite moments are below, representing the world and women's cycling at Worlds.

Jeanne d'Arc Girubuntu from Team Rwanda - Historical Moment
Kathryn Bertine - Does so much for women's cycling besides race.
You can meet here Thursday at our Worlds Social event.

After the last woman (Lisa Brennauer) rolled down the ramp, we repeated our strategy from yesterday's Men U23 race. We got to the hot seat and settled in to see what would play out. It was crazy as Group 4 posted faster lap times than the 3 on the hot seat and then musical chairs started as all 3 moved off and a new 3 came in. Congrats to Linda Villumsen from New Zealand on the win. Linda races for UHC and spent a lot of time in Utah this summer, so it feels like one of our own won, even though no USA athletes made the podium.

The final seconds before winning the World Championship!
Elite Women's ITT Podium
Linda Villumsen signing the Rainbow Jersey

Since we already had our ride in and it was 5p by the time we left the podium, we headed back to VIP to see what was happening. Many of the locals were finishing up their beer, but otherwise it was shutting down. We went back to the hotel and ran into friends which turned into dinner and a great evening. Again, very personal but one of the highlights of my Worlds adventure.

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