Saturday morning my teammate and I headed out to do the first leg of a 3 race omnium, the above mentioned TT. It's a fairly technical course, rolling out and back for 20km. Wind is always a factor here, you adjust pacing according to the direction it's blowing. The forecast called for a constant 15-20, with gusts to 30. The direction meant that we'd have nasty crosswinds, slightly tail or head depending on the part of the course you were on. And when I say constant, think fan.
I had been modifying my position on the new Ridley Dean, trying to find that elusive balance between aerodynamics, power, and comfort. I'd have the SRM on this time, wiring was rough but I ran out of time. The maiden voyage a few weeks prior sans SRM yielded a win, but I had gone out too hard and suffered.
During warmup it was clear the disc and 1080 would be flirting with disaster. Sidewinds drove the bike 10 feet in either direction, almost yanking my arms out of pads. Scary. I left the disc on and switched to my new Token T85 on the front. Amazing difference. Still getting knocked around a bit, but confident that I could steer.
Lined up, took the countdown, and off we went. Right away I was humming along at wayyyy too high a wattage and feeling fine, going out way too hard as usual. Backed off, backed off some more, and finally downshifted to "hampster" which brought the wattage down to a reasonable level. Passed my 30 second guy 2 minutes in. Passed my minute guy 4 minutes in. Kept passing people until I was through our field for the most part. A few times went 70 degrees to the road due to some nasty gusts, I'd just try to stay low and tight so there was less area for the wind to push. Started passing the Women's group which had started well ahead of us.
Hit the turnaround and checked my time.
I was pretty shocked. I knew it felt good but not that good. And with the bit of tailwind coming back, no question I'd get a PB.
Little bit of glitchy big/small ring shifting on the way back over a couple of the climbs, but still felt strong. With the wind I stayed on the aerobars the whole time, normally I would have topped some of the climbs out of the saddle but it was blowing too hard.
Finished it off as hard as I could without standing, and, as usual, felt like losing my lunch for several minutes after. I figured my time at 26:26, beating my old PB by nearly a minute, later review of the power file showed a clean 38w increase over the prior PB in my old position.
Results were running way behind thanks to double the usual number of entries. Last year same time I learned I lost this event by two seconds after an hour wait. Today I had a crit to get to.
Just after the crit I got the word: the P1/2 winner broke the 2 year old course record by 4 seconds with a time of 26:28.
I had gone with the other Masters racers an hour later. I officially clocked in at 26:27. New course record, by one tick.
I'm OK with that.
Had a lot of help. Guys like Doc and JRennie shared advice, information, and old frames. BF for helping me meet these guys. Encouragement from my teammates, and some good coaching. My two buddies who hooked me up on the Dean. And so on.
I decided at the beginning of the season that I'd set a goal of doing 25% of my training miles on the TT bike. Seems to be working
Waiting on a digital from the event and will post it when I get it.