Saturday, 14 April 2007
Antelope RT 50km '3up' Team Time Trial (BUSA)
Team mate: Louis Proust
Bike: Trek (Louis was on his Bianchi)
Distance: 50 kilometres (31.07 miles)
Time: 1 hour 18 minutes 21 seconds
Average speed: 23.792 mph
Did first lap in 40:21:
Grimacing a little on the second lap:
Today raced for the LSE, rather than the Willesden, but our time did not count towards BUSA championship, as our third team mate was ill and didn't ride.
Was more than a little sceptical - my remaining team-mate had never raced before, and has been suffering from knee pain. We'd also only ridden together once before, so he was fairly unused to holding my wheel.
In the end, none of this mattered. The best conditions for racing I've experienced this year (or any year to date I can remember offhand) and a really good atmosphere. Loads of riders, and a course that wasn't as forbidding as I'd been led to believe (two laps of this).
Had met Louis at Marylebone, where I had a cappucino to go with the cafetiere I'd already drunk. The plan was that I'd do 2 miles up front, Louis would do 1 mile, and keep changing like this. I think you're supposed to change much more often than this, but given our lack of practice, this worked pretty well. I, for one, found my 2 mile sections went by really quickly, and broke up the monotony that I sometimes feel when crawling round a solo TT!
We had few problems, except a couple of hairy corners and a horse (which one of the Oxford teams appeared to be drafting...), and recorded a 2-up time of 1:18:21 which compared favourably with some of the 3-up teams. Moreover, at 23.7mph, this was faster than I've ever been at distances of over 10 miles. Louis did a fine job: I'd thought he would have gone much slower on his 1 mile stints, but he kept up a furious pace. A bit of a threat emerging there, then. I felt a bit rubbish for the first ten miles, but started to get some speed up towards the end. A classic sprint finish!
Great atmosphere at the HQ afterwards - lots of loitering around the playing field. Also, I'm recognising more faces and bikes at the events now.
Cambridge Uni had a few teams out: the first ladies team were off just before us, and gave me a swig of water for which I was grateful. Moreover, some of my old CUCC clubmates are still at bloody Cambridge, where seemingly too much money flows if the amount of carbon on display is any measure... And they want the trophy they awarded me in 2005 back! Still, nice to catch up with them.
Very happy with the day, especially given initial scepticism. I'd been looking for a 1:18 at least with 3 men, so to achieve it with just 2 is good going.