Just a month after Australia’s Bridie O’Donnell rode into the cycling history books by setting a new women’s UCI World Hour Record, American Evelyn Stevens (Boels Dolmans) has bested her. On February 27, Stevens rode 47.98 kilometres before the clock ran out, beating O’Donnell’s mark by over one kilometre.
This was the fourth attempt on the women’s world hour record since a modernisation of the rules in 2014. The first to beat Leontien Van Moorsel’s 12-year-old mark of 46.065 kilometres was American law professor Molly Shaffer van Houweling who made it to 46.274 kilometres before the clock ran out. And just last month, O’Donnell added more than 600 metres to Van Houweling’s mark, rising the bar to 46.882 kilometres.
Stevens attempt took place at 7-Eleven Velodrome in Colorado Springs where tickets to the live event had sold out in just six minutes. The newly covered 333 meter velodrome and its location at 1839 metres (6,035 feet) provided prime conditions for speed and it looked like Stevens would even threaten the all-time distance record of 48.159 kilometres set by French cyclist Jeannie Longo in 1996 using the now banned ‘Superman’ position, however it proved a mark too far.
Photographer Casey Gibson was in the midst of it all to capture the action.