Newly crowned Australian time trial champion Luke Durbridge has arrived at the 2019 Santos Tour Down Under ready to help his Mitchelton-Scott teammate Daryl Impey try to defend his title before he turns his attention to the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix back in Europe. Durbridge was, he admits, "over the moon" after preventing time trial world champion Rohan Dennis (Bahrain-Merida) from taking a fourth straight national title against the clock on Tuesday. "I didn't actually expect to win," Durbridge told Cyclingnews ahead of heading out training from Adelaide on Friday. "I thought I had a good shot, but I didn't expect to beat Rohan – the world champion – especially after the road race. I didn't know how I'd recover."ADVERTISEMENT Durbridge spent much of the Nationals road race in the four-man breakaway, alongside his brother-in-law – and eventual winner – Michael Freiberg (Pro Racing Sunshine Coast), his Mitchelton teammate Alex Edmondson, and Chris Harper (Team BridgeLane), eventually finishing fourth. Two days later, Durbridge demonstrated his good form, rather than any tired legs, by taking his third national time trial title, having also won in 2012 and 2013. His last time trial win – his last race win – had been at the 2017 Driedaagse De Panne. Did Durbridge ever doubt that he could get back to the level required to beat Dennis and win the national title? "When Rohan and I first came on the scene, we were sort of neck and neck when it came to time trialling, but then Rohan really stepped up his game, and I seemed to. just not up my game," Durbridge laughed.
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