Germany's Tony Martin wins 4th men's world time-trial title

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Doha (AFP)

Germany's Tony Martin won the men's time-trial title at the Road World Championships in Qatar on Wednesday for a record-equalling fourth time.

Martin obliterated the field, winning by 45 seconds from last year's champion Vasil Kiryienka of Belarus, with Spain's Jonathan Castroviejo a further 25sec back in third.

Martin previously won the title in 2011, 2012 and 2013, and joins Fabian Cancellara as the only four-time winners of the event.

One of the pre-race favourites, Tom Dumoulin, the Olympic silver-medallist, finished way back in 11th place.

The race was surprisingly led for a long time by Ireland's Ryan Mullen, who eventually finished fifth.

It is the second time this week Martin has taken gold, having also triumphed in the team time-trial in his last race for his Etixx-Quick Step outfit.

"It's amazing, I can't believe it," said Martin afterwards.

"Everybody knows that I haven't had a good year.

"But this makes everything OK -- the course was made for me. The only thing I was scared for was the heat."

The 40km race began in temperatures of 37 degrees Celsius (99 degrees Fahrenheit).