Wednesday, April 18, 2007

My first '10'

The Wednesday evening 10 mile time trial is one of the strongest traditions in British cycling. It's a good distance and doesn't take too long to run a race. I did my first one this evening: Chippenham's regular weekly 10.

I knew most of the course, because we do it on the Saturday ride. It's as flat as you'll get around here and on fairly lightly trafficked roads. The course record is 21'39. It was about a 30km ride from work, which gave me a fairly solid number of km today.

I was talking to Ben at the start. He's more of a TT specialist and has been going well of late. Ben had done a 22'35 last week and wasn't sure whether he would improve it. He reckoned I could do about a 24'00 on my normal bike, which would have been a shade over 40km/h. I was hoping for a bit quicker, given the fact that I've been able to hold about 360W on longish climbs without blowing a gasket. 360W on a dead flat road with no wind on a normal bike equates to just over 23'00. With tri bars, aero helmet, skinsuit, shoe covers, aero frame and wheels, it should be possible to do around 21'50 with that power output. Minus a bit for course undulations and corners.

It was a painfully enjoyable experience, sitting on 178bpm in my 53x15 for most of it. I caught my minute man after 10 min, then my 2 min man after 20 min, and I could see my 3 and 4 minute men just ahead as I finished in 23'20. Ben started just behind me and almost caught me, as he ended with 22'23. Nice ride for the quickest time! I'm pretty sure I was fourth, as there were a couple more under 23'00. I'm looking forward to doing it on a proper TT machine :-)

Alas, me and five others got a penalty (not sure how much) for cutting one of the corners by about a foot. It was fair enough. I wasn't exactly sure where I was aiming for, but as soon as I went round it I knew. Next time, I'll make certain I get it right.

Ik ben naar Londen op het weekend om de familie te zien.

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