Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lessons in Time Trialing

The district championship TT was held this year at Church Creek - this year's second edition of the classic time trial on a flat, fast and windy course. We had 4 women competing - Leslie and Wendy in the 1/2s and Sara and Mel in the Cat3s - all competitors, all with a chance to do something for the championship. Robin volunteered to be support and resident soigneur.

Traffic heading toward the beach on a warm, summer weekend sucks. Our start times were much later than normal for this race so our travel times were later - instead of watching the sun rise as we crossed the Bay Bridge, we suffered in beach traffic, crawling at a snail's pace toward our destination. Poor Mel arrived about a 1/2 hr before her start time ... nothing like rushing toward the start line to get your heart rate up. Who needs a warm-up, anyway?!?

Have all your equipment together, do not count on equipment to be delivered to you.
Thankfully Robin and Mel did arrive before Wendy's start time - otherwise she was sans disc wheel (thank you, Jason) and aero-helmet (thank you, Robin).

Check the official clock and don't miss your start time. Leslie was strolling around the start area thinking she had another 15m or so ... luckily she rode up to the official's tent and asked for the time ... they politely informed her to GO-NOW since she was about 3mins past her start time.

When you miss your start time, the first half of the TT goes by quickly as you mutter expletives to yourself and push yourself harder than ever. Leslie had her best TT ever on that course and the fastest women's time if you take away the ~3min late start ... congrats on a great ride !

Your bike fit will make a huge difference. Wendy was within 2seconds of the jersey after posting dismal TT results all year. A last-minute bike fit by Josh Frick, Performance Director at CycleLife, made a huge difference in her time and comfort level. Her write up is here. Suffice it to say, she was a happy camper.

Sara learned the same lesson in a different way: by the end of the TT her legs were so sore she could barely pedal and her saddle had violated her in a variety of ways. Sara is going to CycleLife to get her fit done this week after seeing how much of a difference it made for Wendy.

Despite all of these lessons learned, we still claimed 2 silver medals and 2-4th place finishes. Not too shabby, if I do say so myself.

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