First bike race - not last!
Since I have had to work every weekend that a crit race has been scheduled, my first ever organised bike race was a time trial. Up a hill.
I turned up nice and early to register (number 121) and to see the start process. The local racing association has some neat timing gear (countdown, beeps, running clock etc) and I was going to have a held start (ie so I could be clipped in both feet).
The course was up Fei Ngo Shan in Hong Kong. It is on the Kowloon side and is one of the '9 dragons' from which Kowloon gets it's name. Kowloon is actually 'gau loong' or 9 dragons - each dragon being a hill.
I had to race against the clock up a 2.4km (1.5mi) section of narrow road that rose 216m (710ft) to the finish. That's 475ft per mile - nasty.
The Garmin data is a bit scary - HR over 170 the whole way, peaking at 189 (I'm 38, so this is pretty much hard on the redline). The speed was good for the first 5 mins, as was the power (machine calculates 280kW ave for first 5mins), but then things all slowed down - except for the HR!
The guy who started behind me (1 min) overtook me about half way up. The only other person I saw was a guy in the small wheel bike division who I almost caught with 30m to go (but I think I had taken 3-4 mins off him).
Course record is under 8 minutes, but not sure of today's best. Winner of my division (30-39 masters) was 9.58. There were a few times in the 10 min range, the 11 and 12 min ranges then a big gap to me at 15.29. However, one guy came in at 18+, so I was not last! Only 9 starters (12 on program), so 8th from 9 is ok by me. A top ten finish!
Not sure how I compared to other divisions yet, but I'm pretty sure I've taken a bunch of the guys on the small wheel/folding bikes and I'll be really upset if I don't beat all the girls on mountain bikes!
Hard work. Not fun (I actually wondered if it was possible to vomit to the side while riding and not stop). Not flattering (lovely wife came to watch and took a series of the most unflattering photos of all time).
I'll do it again!
EDIT - and I think I was the heaviest guy by about 30kg.