British time trial champion Alex Dowsett will attempt to reclaim the UCI Hour Record in Manchester next month.
Dowsett broke the prestigious record back in 2015 but held it for only 36 days before Sir Bradley Wiggins took the title from him.
Since then, three more riders have taken on the gruelling task but only one succeeded – Victor Campenaerts, who covered a distance of 55.089 kilometres in 60 minutes at the Velodromo Bicentenario in Aguascalientes, Mexico last year.
Campenaert’s mark was just over two kilometres further than Dowsett managed in Manchester five years ago, but though altitude can make a significant difference, Dowsett will return to the National Cycling Centre for his latest attempt on December 12.
The 32-year-old said: “When I took the record in 2015, we rode enough to break the record but I knew I had more in the tank at the end which was frustrating given the work put in by everyone.
“I spotted an opportunity in December this year to have another go and obviously I want to try and break the record, I want to see what I’m capable of and it’s an event I just really love and feel privileged to have the opportunity to take on again.
“In terms of difficulty, this time around I know the bar has been set extremely high by Victor. It’s going to be a very big ask but I think I’m capable.”
Dowsett, who is training to compete in the 2021 Olympics, has severe haemophilia A and is taking on the attempt in support of his charity Little Bleeders and The Haemophilia Society.
The Essex-born rider has spent the past season with the Israel Start-Up Nation squad that Chris Froome will join this winter, and scored the team’s first Grand Tour stage victory at the Giro d’Italia last month.
Dowsett’s contract is up this year, but in a YouTube video he posted this weekend he said he had agreed a new two-year deal with an unnamed team.