Tuesday, September 07, 2010

The news in brief

Still busy, but it'll calm down in about a month when I go on hols.

I was going to write a blog or two on trying to do the perfect 10 but didn't get round to it.

It's been an aim of mine to get under 21 minutes in the club 10 and although I got close this year, there was no cigar. It's mainly because I needed the perfect combination of power, wind direction and position (I've been mucking about with that a lot) to nail it.

The closest I came was a 21'18 a few weeks ago. Although my power wasn't great, the wind was perfect and I was also using my most aero position. Unfortunately with 2.5 miles to go I got passed by a car (one of about four to pass me all up) just as I was catching the rider in front. The driver couldn't get past that rider in time and I ended up on the brakes. Repeat for the next rider.

In lost time alone it was 10seconds. Maybe a bit more than that for accelerating/decelerating. So close...

In the last club 10 the wind was blowing lightly but the wrong way. I experimented with another position and although I managed a season's best power and had a perfectly smooth run (pacing was horrible though), the position cost me about 10sec and I ended up with ... 21'19.

I'll try to put it all together next season, as I quite enjoy the club 10 course. No traffic assistance, back roads, a few bends and it finishes higher than it starts. Good fun!

Other than that, I'm just winding up for the last bit of the season, which includes a 50, a 25, the journo worlds (TTT, TT, circuit race) and a 20km TT at Blenheim Palace.

I also took part in the British TT championships again, this time in the elite class. Ho ho. It was not with the aim of finishing highly, more to see how I'd go against the likes of proper riders. Brad Wiggins, Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome from Team Sky were all there and were all hungry for the jersey. As was Hutch, but he didn't get a look in. It was pretty special to race against three Tour de France riders,even if I did finish 7'25 down on Wiggo (as did Cadel Evans in the final Tour time trial this year, over a similar distance. Lol.) Results here.

It was a cracking course around Llandeilo in south west Wales - a fast start, gradually downhill with a tailwind, then a short twisty, lumpy section past a castle, then back towards down on a dead uphill drag into the wind. There was a 9% zig zag climb through town which was packed with people. A fantastic atmosphere and one that you just don't get very often, especially in British time trialling. We did two full laps plus another two thirds of a lap for 52.7km.

Unlike last year I had not specifically targeted this race so I was a bit more relaxed about it and managed to enjoy myself. The first lap was solid, the second I went off the boil after hitting a heavy shower on the first half of the course (which had completely dried up by the third lap).

James Wall, who was off a minute behind me, then caught me on the hill through Llandeilo with about 15km to go. I figured he'd ride away from me on the downhill but he didn't and I stayed about 100m behind him for the rest of it. I actually didn't wind it up at the end like normal because I didn't want to overtake him and risk a possible DQ. So I finished quite comfortably, which is rare in a TT. It did cost me a few places but it wasn't too important. Pic here.

Power was decent - average for what I've been doing in training, but a fair bit better than I did for the 5th round of the Rudy Project. And hopefully there's a bit more to come in the next few weeks. We'll see.

Much other stuff happening, all important but far too mundane to write down here.

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