Emmen proved to be a happy hunting ground once again for Simon Price as he added another World Cup medal to his collection last weekend.
Having won gold and bronze at the Dutch town in the corresponding event just 12 months before, the international para-cyclist came within 10 seconds of repeating the double podium feat.
The Thorpe Satchville rider was edged into silver medal position in the C2 road race on Sunday, having finished just outside the medals in fourth place at Friday’s time trial.
Price, who rides without the use of his left leg, had been out of sorts in finishing well outside the medals at the previous World Cup, at Ostend, in May.
But either side of that he had been encouraged by his form in training and felt he was approaching peak fitness as he builds towards the main goal of his season - next month’s World Championships, in Italy.
Colombian rider Alejandro Perea Arango, who won double world championship gold on the track earlier this year, dominated the weekend and laid an early marker for Maniago by taking gold in both disciplines.
At 21, he is 28 years Price’s junior and covered the 16km time trial course in a blistering 22min 06secs, with Price then setting the next quickest mark, albeit 41 seconds down.
“I was pleased with my time trial performance,” he said. “Having had two below-par rides in recent events I was back in the mix.
“After I finished I knew I was in second place because Arango had already come in with an incredible time.
“Then it was a case of watching the last seven who started behind me to come home.”
Price finished just 10 seconds down on familiar foe Arslan Gilmutdinov, of Russia, who took bronze, but eight seconds clear of Peruvian rival Israel Hilario Rimas.
He added: “Ewoud Vromant is improving with every event and pushed me into third, and then it was slightly disappointing to see the last man to start, Arslan Gilmudtinov, pip me by 10 seconds.
“In truth I did all I could on the day and delivered a very solid performance.”
In the road race, the Leicestershire rider was hoping for a repeat of his gold-medal winning ride 12 months ago when he used a technical section late in the course to attack at the perfect moment.
With a large field combining three different categories - C1, C2 and C3 – half the C2 field were distanced early on, but an 11-strong bunch remained intact moving into the finale of the 63km race.
“It was very fast from the off and the field reduced in size to about 20 going into the last lap,” Price explained.
“The Colombian attacked with 4km to go and then it was all about trying to get in the best position into the last dead turn at 500m to go.”
Price used all of his nous from his racing days to stay in contention, but Arango took his second victory of the weekend by a slender three-second margin.
Behind him, the Great Britain international headed a four-man bunch to take silver from world number two Vromant, Gilmutdinov, and Japanese rider Shota Kawamoto, all of whom were given the same time.
Another quartet of riders finished just three seconds further adrift, as just 11 seconds covered the top 11.
Price added: “I timed my run to perfection, leading up the slip road and although four C3s got past me, the positions were very unlikely to change in the very fast last 300m with two corners, which proved to be the case.
“So I delivered the perfect finale in a very fast, tight and technical finish.”
Price, who moved up to eighth in the UCI’s world rankings, will look to taper down his training in the coming weeks before heading off to Italy late in July to acclimatise.
The world championships, in Maniago, run from Thursday, August 2 to Sunday, August 5.