Peter Kennaugh described the men’s road race at the UCI Road World Championships as a war of attrition as he finished the season on a high in Austria.
Despite missing large parts of the campaign, the Olympic gold medallist was able to recover to finish the season positively with a 16th place finish as Adam Yates placed 37th.
The gruelling 258.5km race brought the curtain down on the competition in Innsbruck and Kennaugh maintained his pace throughout before attacking with 22km to go.
But he could not hold off the challengers as Spain’s Alejandro Valverde took the victory with French rider Romain Bardet and Canada’s Michael Woods in second and third respectively.
Kennaugh, 29, revealed how gruelling the course was but was admits it was a great race to be a part of.
He said: "I feel sick now! But what a race. I didn’t expect it to be so hard early on, the break took a while to go and then every lap was raced pretty high tempo on the climb.
“When it got to that stage of the race it came down to who was the freshest. It was hard to see how it unfolded.”
"It was really strange without radios, there was one point when I looked behind on the climb and there were 60 or 70 guys left.
"It was like a war of attrition all day.
“It was way harder than expected – it was just raced full gas from the start, even the break took long to for a World Championship.
“Then the pace was just really hard every lap on the climb. Unfortunately Simon wasn’t feeling great – so we just did what we could do.