Redhill Sporting 18 TT

17 Feb
First open TT on the the TT bike today, was actually pretty nervous, not least because of all the pressure I had put on myself to go quick given the effort, time and money that went into building the TT bike.

The course can be seen here (http://app.strava.com/activities/41230665#686908632), I perhaps foolishly went and did a recce of it yesterday, which turned into a 2.5 hour ride, but I don’t think it hindered my legs at all for today. The course is rolling with a couple of steep little kicks and a nice 3 miles of DC at the end to remind you its a TT!

HUGE field of 80 riders today, which can be seen here (http://www.timetriallingforum.co.uk/index.php?showtopic=76178), as you can see there are a few names in there, and certainly some very fast riders. I knew that Seb Ader, Tadros, Yates, Prebble and KW’s own Steve Irwin were all very quick guys with some impressive results to their names both past and present in some cases! Today was one of those events where you know you’re not going to win, but you are going to give it a damn good go anyway. And that is what I intended to do.

The course was a little damp, mainly due to a lingering fog that became thicker as I got further away from Kingston. I was happy with the the way the bike felt when I did get on all kitted up, got a quick warm up on the way to the start (not very pro, but all I had time for really).

Started strong, down the hill (I had gone faster down it yesterday annoyingly) and straight into the horrible 12% half mile incline where it turned out the eventual winner Ader took a shed load of time out of most people, the joys of being light AND powerful for him.
I was going well I thought, bit of late braking turning off the a25 certainly showed me where the Speed Concepts limits were in terms of stopping power. Before long I felt like I was settled into a rhythm, but as often with myself I found myself day dreaming for a few seconds here and there, looked down and saw a number starting with a 2 in the power windw and had to mentally slap myself out of it (must be more focused I feel). My one pacing note was that last years winner (Steve Berry) had managed an average speed of around 25.7 MPH, so I knew if I wanted to be in with a chance of being top 10 I needed to be over 25 avg.

As I entered the last 2 miles I looked down, saw I was just under 25, so that really kicked me into gear a bit, and for the last couple of miles I really motored, and for the last mile or so I averaged towards 35 mph and did half a mile at 40 touching 42 on the final downhill (this felt quick). I crossed the line in 42.35 and average of 25.5 mph, I was pretty happy with it, thinking it might be quite a competitive time…I got back to the club house and saw Conall Yates had done a 41.21, so I knew that the very fast guys would be some way in front of me, and they indeed were, Tadros just pipped yates, and Prebble beat me by around 15 secs I think, Steve from our club was just 8 secs back on me which promises the start of a good battle for the club records this season, star of the show certainly was Seb who clocked a 40.57, very quick, so in the end I was in at 5th place. I later learned Wouter from Sigma had done a 39.xx on there…crazy.

I really enjoyed the first TT on the TT bike, we had a good showing from the club too. So hopefully when we do our club event next weekend I can put into practice what I learned today.

Stats and all that business are on my ride on strava, pleased with the watts, and wondering whether I can eek out a few more on the road bike and make my TT position faster.

markghopkins.co.uk: Redhill CC 18m TT &emdash;

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