Saturday, April 02, 2011

I move well, don't I?

Thus spake Irma Prunesquallor to her brother Alfred in Titus Groan (or was it Gormenghast?).

This was before she organised a grand party with the stated intention of securing herself a man. Which she did do in the form of Professor Bellgrove.

I kept getting reminded of this quote at last night's dinner party organised by one of the girls at work. She has already got a man (French), who was tasked with cooking for the remaining eight of us. He did a fine job, which is lucky because it is his job.

That left the rest of us (women outnumbering men 3:1, I am spoken for, you do the maths) to make the most of the occasion, which we did until approximately 3am. The combination of strong characters, food and wine was a real assault on the senses, but a hell of a lot of fun. Top marks.

3 hours on the velocipede the today wasn't quite as much fun, but I got through it.

Rudy Project #1

© David Jones

The first round of the Rudy Project time trial series was last weekend in Essex. Twas a 25.5 mile (41km) course on rolling twisting mostly back roads. I stayed in a B&B run by a triathlete who'd broken her hip after crashing on black ice in January. She's a multiple age group winner at world level so is pretty keen to get back into it. But a few more weeks to go before she can ride again.

We had another guest in the form of Michelle King, who went on to win the women's race by 2'30. I was clearly in good company although the next day I didn't end up winning by 2'30. In fact I came third to Matt Bottrill by 3'10. It just goes to show. What, I'm not sure.

I actually had a very decent ride - in power terms it'd be in my top 4 since the start of 2009. Encouragingly, it was nicely up on the Chippenham hilly a few weeks ago, so the training is paying off. I also beat a few riders who I thought would beat me, so that was nice.

But my 56'52 looked positively slow compared to Bottrill's 53'42. He took nearly 6 minutes off the course record and that's a hell of a ride. Second went to Andrew Griffiths in 56'18. He's the U23 national champion so there was no shame in being beaten by him.

Bottrill has improved a lot over the last year, either in power or aero terms or both. I remember in round 4 of the Rudy Project last year I got within 1'30 of him on almost the same power over the same distance. So basically he's opened up another 30W on me, and that is an impossible gap to bridge. And he's not even peaked yet, according to his coach! It'll be interesting to see how he fares against Hutch, come nationals time.

So while I was perfectly happy with my ride, it will change how I focus on the rest of the season.

Here are some short vids of us in action, courtesy of Scott Povey's girlfriend. Scott unfortunately crashed during the race but at least he wasn't badly hurt and ended up finishing 10th in 59'01.

Me, "moving well"

Scott Povey, also moving well

Matt Bottrill, moving well and a hell of a lot faster than the rest of us

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