Olympic triathlete Taylor Knibb wins US cycling time trial to secure spot in Paris

Olympic triathlete Taylor Knibb secured her place on the American team for the Paris Games by winning the women’s time trial at the U.S. road cycling championships. Knibb, who will now have the opportunity to compete in two different sports at the upcoming Olympics, covered the flat, out-and-back course in 45 minutes and 54 seconds.

Knibb’s victory over pre-race favourite Kristen Faulkner by 11 seconds and three-time Olympian Amber Neben by 49 seconds was a surprise even to her. “I’m in shock. I’ll be perfectly honest,” said Knibb at the finish line. “There are so many incredible riders out here — it was such an incredible day riding with them. I’m like, ‘Wow, this is so cool. They ride on the World Tour. That’s amazing!’”

Knibb’s win means she will join Chloe Dygert in the time trial and road race in Paris. Dygert had already qualified for the Olympics by winning the time trial at last year’s world championships and did not compete at nationals.

In addition to her cycling achievements, Knibb had previously qualified for the triathlon in Paris, finishing fifth at a test event last August. This achievement cements her as one of the rare athletes to compete in two different sports at the same Olympic Games.

Knibb recounted her experience on the course, saying, “There were four turns and that’s it. Last year, there were so many turns and my coach said, ‘You’re really good at holding race pace. Your weakness is getting to race pace.’ So, only four times I had to get to race pace. And that was a relief for me. If it did get a little bit more surgey, it would have probably favoured some other women a lot better.”

The U.S. team has now secured two women’s entries for the Paris Olympics — Knibb and Dygert. On the men’s side, McNulty locked up one spot, with the other two to be announced later, influenced by various factors, including participation in the Tour de France.

Brandon McNulty, a stage winner at the Giro d’Italia last year and third overall at Paris-Nice this season, was the final rider off in the men’s time trial. By the intermediate time check, he was more than 30 seconds ahead of his closest competitors and maintained his lead to secure the win.

The U.S. road cycling championships continue through the weekend in Charleston, with the men’s and women’s road races concluding the competition on Sunday. Although no automatic Olympic berths are at stake in these races, they will still be fiercely contested.

2024 USA National Championships TT Women result

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2024 USA National Championships TT Men result

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