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Page last updated at 11:42 GMT, Wednesday, 13 October 2010 12:42 UK

Commonwealth Games 2010: Millar wins time trial gold

David Millar

Scotland's Millar wins time trial gold

Cyclist David Millar won Scotland's first ever gold medal in a road cycling event at the Commonwealth Games when he took the time trial title.

England's Alex Dowsett won silver while Australian Luke Durbridge took bronze.

Millar, 33, who completed a two-year suspension from cycling in 2006 for using the banned drug EPO, won the bronze in Sunday's road race.

England's Julia Shaw took bronze on her Games debut at the age of 45 in the women's time trial, over 29km.

Millar cannot compete for Britain in the Olympics because of his drugs ban but he was given special dispensation by Commonwealth Games Scotland to compete in Delhi.

He took 47 minutes 18.66 seconds to complete the 40km course, ahead of Essex 22-year-old Dowsett, who clocked 48:13.48.

I've lived all over the place my whole life, but I am Scottish. My heart's in Scotland

David Millar

"It's been my big goal all year - it feels great," said Millar, who won World Championships time-trial silver at the end of September.

"It was hard. It was like being on a treadmill in a sauna."

Millar, who lives in Girona, Spain, admits he felt an extra stir of patriotism when collecting his gold medal.

"It's the first chance I've ever had to ride for Scotland, so it was quite emotional on the podium," he added.

"When you're so focused on the event you forget why you do it, and why it's so important to you.

"But when I was standing on the podium and the flag was going up, and the whole team was standing in front of me, singing Flower of Scotland, it hit home what it meant to me.

"I've lived all over the place my whole life, but I am Scottish. My heart's in Scotland."

The course didn't suit me and I didn't have a good ride

Emma Pooley
In the women's time trial, Canada's Tara Whitten grabbed gold ahead of New Zealand's Linda Villumsen.

England's Emma Pooley, who won the world title a fortnight ago in Australia, finished ninth on a flat course in temperatures touching 43C on the road.

It was an unexpected medal for Shaw, who said: "I thought about stopping last year but my coach persuaded me to keep on going and said I had a chance here."

The Hampshire-based physicist, who trained at home in a room with the heating on, was 10.22 seconds behind the winner in 39:09.52.

"When we discovered the course out here was very flat we thought it might be a good time for me to try and get into the squad," she said.

"I had no idea what to expect out here. As the race was happening I didn't really know how I was doing. I just tried to keep going."

Pooley was disappointed with her performance but refused to blame the stomach bug she has been suffering from.

"The course didn't suit me and I didn't have a good ride," she said.

Whitten, who only started cycling to train for her first sport - cross country skiing, was delighted to pick up a gold medal, with a time of 38:59.30.

"I'm really happy," she said. "It was the best day's racing I've ever had. It was really painful for the last 10km, but I knew I had to win so I was able to hold it together."

The Canadian was competing in her sixth event at the Commonwealth Games, having won three bronze medals on the track.

With an eye on London 2012, she added: "For the Olympics I'm going to focus on fewer events and figure out what my priorities are."

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see also
Millar & Armitstead secure medals
10 Oct 10 |  Commonwealth Games
Pooley wins world time trial gold
29 Sep 10 |  Cycling
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Pooley's quiet rise
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