Canada’s Nathan Clement wins gold at UCI Cycling World Championships

Canadian Paralympic Committee

August 09, 2023

Shelley Gautier takes bronze to make it a double-medal day for Canada

Nathan Clement

DUMFRIES, Scotland – After leaving the velodrome with five track medals, Canada’s Para cycling team opened the road portion of the UCI Cycling World Championships on Wednesday with two trips to the podium including gold for West Vancouver’s Nathan Clement.

In the men’s T1 (tricycle) 10.8 kilometre time trial, Clement produced a powerful second half to earn his first world crown in 18 minutes and 50.35 seconds. Two Chinese riders followed with Jianxin Chen second 7.05 seconds behind and Rongfei Lu third 18.75 back of Clement.

When asked what it’s like to be a world champion, Clement broke down in tears and needed 20 seconds to recompose.

‘’It’s pretty surreal, as you can see, I’m at a loss for words,” said Clement, a former Paralympic swimmer, who broke onto the international cycling scene last season with two silver medals at the Para road worlds.

‘’I’ve always loved sports my whole life and always understand when athletes get emotional when they win what they dream. I think of all the many people who pushed me to this point through the good and the bad.”

Clement lauded his coach Phil Abbott, his support staff in Vancouver, and his family. He had a special thought for his grandfather who passed away in 2018. Clement had a stroke at age two which caused him to lose mobility on one side of his body.

‘’When I had my stroke, my grandfather would often bring me to the children’s hospital in Vancouver by car and other appointments. Afterwards we’d go to McDonald’s each time. My grandparents really helped me grow as a kid and provided so much support when I was young and going through rehabilitation.”

Shelly Gautier of Toronto, an 18-time world champion, took the bronze in the women’s T1 10.8 kilometre time trial. Pavlina Vejvodova of Czechia was first and Eltje Malzbender of New Zealand second.

‘’The race went really well,” said Gautier, a three-time Paralympian. ‘’I just focused on the time I wanted. I went out, didn’t worry about anything, and made sure I was well hydrated.’’

Eight Canadians were in action on the first day of the Para road time trials.

Three of them were in the men’s H3 17 kilometre time trial. Charles Moreau of Victoriaville, Que., the bronze medallist last year, missed the podium by only 0.08 seconds placing fourth. Alexander Hyndman of Morpeth, Ont. was 18th and Joey Desjardins of Hawkesbury, Ont. was 26th.

‘’It was an excellent day for me without any issues,” said Moreau, a double bronze medallist at the 2016 Paralympic Games. ‘’The preparation went very well. I still have two more races (the road race and the relay) to try and get on the podium.”

Matthew Kinnie of Riverview, N.B. was fifth in the men’s H2 (hand cycle) time trial. Kinnie, the Parapan Am Games champion in 2019, has had a tough summer with two serious crashes at World Cups this season.

‘’It’s nice to end the year on a high note and finish a race the way you know how,” said Kinnie, fourth in the event at the last two worlds. ‘’When you crash it really takes the wind out of your sails. I started having doubts. I have a job and family and you always want to deliver good news and not report a crash.’’

In other time trial results, Kara Douville of Calgary was ninth in the women’s H4 and Louis-Albert Corriveau-Jolin of Ste-Claire, Que. was 12th in the men’s T2.

Competition continues Thursday with seven Canadian riders and two guides in action. Those to watch include Paralympic medallists Keely Shaw of Midale, Sask. and Mike Sametz of Calgary as well as this week’s triple track medallist Mel Pemble of Victoria.

Full results:

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