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Preview: All you need to know about the UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships.

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3 weeks ago

It has already been a happy hunting ground for them in the past, but now Great Britain’s para cyclists are taking to the South African roads this weekend for the 2017 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships.

The British team will join the world’s elite in Pietermaritzburg for the highlight of this year’s calendar, a location which saw plenty of medals in the 2015 UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup for the home heroes.

That was none more so than for Steve Bate and Adam Duggleby, the double Paralympic champions who also took gold in the rainbow nation, while Corrine Hall and Lora Fachie struck twice.

Rainbow will certainly be the order of the day this time around, with Bate in particular looking to pick up a jersey that has thus far eluded him in his already-esteemed career.

And with this the first World Championships since the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, the foundations for the road to Tokyo 2020 could very well be laid down here.

The history

Only since 2009 has the UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships been a part of the calendar, with this the seventh edition of the competition which takes place annually, with the exception of Paralympic Games years.

It began in Bogogno, Italy, and has since been on a world tour, though the 2017 edition will see history as the first of this Championships to take place in Africa.

The last event, in 2015, was to feature 32 nations including Great Britain, who picked up two gold medals – both for Dame Sarah Storey in the C5 21km and 62km road races.

Seven British stars will take to the road this time around, a squad boasting plenty of international pedigree on the world stage.

The schedule

Beginning on Thursday August 31, the tournament in South Africa will run for four days right through until the end of the weekend.

The full schedule can be viewed here, with the action getting underway with the men’s T2 time trial, while the men’s C2 and C3 and women’s C5 time trials follow on Friday morning.

That will be followed by the men’s C5, men’s B and women’s B time trials, while it’s Saturday when the first of the road races takes place.

The squad

As many as seven British riders have made the trip to South Africa, two of whom are accompanied by pilots, looking to make the most of the first World Championships in two years.

That includes Simon Price and Crystal Lane-Wright, who both won road race bronze medals in Roskilde, Denmark six years ago, confident of more of the same this time around.

Recent results

Steve Bate, piloted by Adam Duggleby

Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – gold in individual pursuit B
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – gold in road time trial B
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – bronze in road race B

William Bjergfelt

2017 National Para-cycling Road Championships – gold in C3 time trial
2017 Emmen World Cup – bronze in road race

Craig Collis-McCann

2017 Maniago World Cup – silver in road race
2017 Ostend World Cup – gold in road race

Lora Fachie, piloted by Corrine Hall

2017 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships – silver in pursuit
2017 UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup – silver in time trial
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – gold in pursuit

Crystal Lane-Wright

2017 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships – silver in time trial
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – silver in individual pursuit
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games – bronze in time trial

Simon Price

2017 UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup – gold in road race
2017 UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup – bronze in time trial

Ben Watson

2017 Emmen World Cup – bronze in time trial

How to follow

British Cycling will be live streaming the event here

There will also be live coverage on the ParalympicsGB Twitter account, and a daily roundup of the action on thewebsite.

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