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Race reports

Discussion in 'Pedal Powered' started by One More Solo, Mar 15, 2015.

  1. Shadowness

    Mobster

    Joined: Sep 17, 2006

    Posts: 2,806

    Location: Gloucestershire

    Not sure if dirty tri talk is allowed still but here goes......:p

    I did my 4th triathlon yesterday, the Cotswold Classic - another half ironman distance effectively. So 1.2 mile swim, 56 bike, 13.1 run.

    This was only my second attempt at this distance, the first being the Stafford 70.3 (post 583). This should have been a much quicker day, as it's a much flatter ride and run, around the lakes near Cirencester.

    Swim - 31:57 (143rd overall)

    As always, my most dreaded bit. Luckily the weather for the day was pretty much perfect, overcast (so no sun) and very gentle winds (if any). So the lake was incredibly still, and pretty warm at around 22C too.
    Like Stafford, I had around 35 minutes as my target, which isn't anything special at all but it's enough to set myself up for a reasonably good overall time.
    In the end I managed just under 32 minutes, and felt really good all the way around. Setting off in waves meant there wasn't too many bodies piled on top of each other - although I still got a few kicks in the face :rolleyes:

    Bike - 2:19 (25th overall)

    I was really looking forward to the bike leg, as always. There was 3x less elevation on this course than Stafford, and I managed 22.5 avg there. Here I was hoping for 24 avg.
    The course was really good, nothing technical, but my god our roads our crap, and you really feel it bouncing around on your elbows in the TT position!
    I still need some practise riding immediately after the swim. My heart rate was pretty much at maximum for the first 20 mins, and I struggled to keep it down while still keeping up the pace.
    My main issue was hydration - I don't think I drank anywhere near enough over the 2ish hours, despite taking bottles from the aid stations. This is something I need to work on for next time.

    In the end I managed just a 2:19, which fell short of my 24 avg target (managed 23.5). Still, it was good enough for 25th fastest on the day, among a very strong field!

    Run - 1:33 (48th overall)

    Due to the hydration issues on the ride, I wasn't in the best place even at the start of the run. Not ideal as I was really looking forward to this run, a nice flat course around the lakes, great PB material!
    By the 3rd lap (of 3) I was not in a good place. It was the first time I've physically stopped at a fuel stop and drank a crap load of water (not the best idea I know, but I needed something in me). Probably lost a couple of minutes doing this a few times.
    The last couple of miles were just fighting the exhaustion - looking forward to collapsing after the finish line.

    Somehow I clocked the 48th fastest time of the day, and just missed my 7 min/mile target (7:04).

    Overall a great event, and I was ecstatic to beat my main goal of the day, cracking 4:30 hours, which I did (just!) at 4:29.35. That was good enough for 34th overall. Not a bad result among a very strong field, and 900+ competitors.

    It's still clear where I can make up time, the swim. The top guys were completing that in 22-24 mins. A lot of work to get anywhere near that sort of time!

    Next event......Weymouth 70.3, and my first sea swim event! Can't wait!
     
  2. Jonny ///M

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Nov 23, 2004

    Posts: 9,998

    Good result for your 4th one mate.

    Most people will have one event they aren't the best at but the swim will see the biggest gains. I know a guy who goes to a water sports place locally to do it and a few others that cycle 50 miles to a Loch for a swim then ride home.
     
  3. Django x2

    Capodecina

    Joined: Sep 28, 2008

    Posts: 13,000

    Location: Britain

    It won't. A swim barely makes up any of the overall time for a half or full distance. It would take immensely more effort to drop 10mims from the swim than it would from the bike (and probably run). The run being the key component to all half and long distance.
     
  4. Jonny ///M

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Nov 23, 2004

    Posts: 9,998

    Makes sense when you think about it :o

    I'll stick to doing the least amount of work in road races :D
     
  5. Django x2

    Capodecina

    Joined: Sep 28, 2008

    Posts: 13,000

    Location: Britain

    Yep. Best way.

    Bike example is 6h for 112 miles at 30kph you'll come home in 5h50 by upping that to 30.9kph.
     
  6. Shadowness

    Mobster

    Joined: Sep 17, 2006

    Posts: 2,806

    Location: Gloucestershire

    As above really, there's definitely time to be saved from my swim, but shaving 10 minutes for example would be incredibly hard, whereas 10 mins off the bike, or even run, would be easier to accomplish.
     
  7. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Managed to get into my local Open 10 again last night, weather forecast was ok prior, nice low pressure but a 12-14mph wind from the SW. Unfortunately reality was 16mph or so wind with rain just as I started! :D

    I got my head down and ploughed on though, took it easy on the outleg knowing coming back would be harder, got to the turn not especially quickly 11:something hit the turn very tentatively due to the greasy horrible surface, got off the turn and hammered it hard home, knowing my 30 second man would be catching me, my aim was to lot him do this (he finished 41seconds quicker than me last week). Power was down to 270W avg as I left the turn with about 4.25 miles to go. I piled on hard to the finish. Unfortunately the turn had left my visor all steamed up, but got my head focused and pushed on through to finish with my third sub 21min ride in a row with average power of 281w, not as high as I'd hoped but another good time considering the conditions and how slowly I took it in the corners.

    Slowly getting to my targets but need to eke some more power out. 25 this coming Sunday and would love to get as close to 52:30 or under it as possible to hit one of my targets of the season.
     
  8. Berger

    Capodecina

    Joined: May 22, 2003

    Posts: 10,295

    Location: Wigan

    My club 10 tonight and I also went sub 21 again! A 20:52.

    I was running my new bars which give a little more comfort and control.

    Terrible luck with roundabouts, having to slow to 30kmh for one you can take flat at 50kmh and then from 45 down to 30ish again for one you can ride at 40-45kmh.

    Burnt my matches getting back up to speed and suffered on the final leg, knew I was close to the club course PB 20:46 but just missing it again. I’d have beaten it for sure with clear traffic.

    Not downloaded my Garmin yet but expecting 310-315w average.

    Edit: only 308w, down again. Could be several reasons so not too worried!

    Annoying I am missing the next two weeks and then there is only one remaining so I can’t see the stars aligning!

    Least for next year I have a good starting position. I think there is a little to be gained from mechanical efficiency but that’s for another post.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
  9. Django x2

    Capodecina

    Joined: Sep 28, 2008

    Posts: 13,000

    Location: Britain

    Good effort!!
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2019
  10. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Last TT of the year for me last Sunday, and it went so so terribly :D

    Did my usual warm up and headed to the start point, unfortunately missed the turn en route and then missed my start!!! Eventually after flogging myself to get there I started 10 minutes late, knowing I wasn't going to do much I just rode at probably 95% as in my head I couldn't give that last bit, heat definitely hit me Sunday morning, HR was up, power slightly down, but ended in 54:08 (+10 minutes), which was a course PB by 1:50, so not all bad. Just took it on the chin and know it's something to add to my pre race day checks next time - route to the start. Not the first time I've had problems on this course, almost missed the start once before.

    So end of season I've massively improved my 10 (20:36 down from 21:02), 25 (53:10 down from 53:47) and 50 mile PBs (1:48:39 down from 1:53:25), not quite down to my target times and power but getting there, I know my position can be worked on and got some bits to improve on the bike itself to get me some minor gains, and obviously know I can increase my power which has taken a leap this year, but I haven't really increased over the course of the year like I would have hoped even with less racing.

    Now to focus on CX - only 2 and a bit weeks away now :S
     
  11. Berger

    Capodecina

    Joined: May 22, 2003

    Posts: 10,295

    Location: Wigan

    #crossiscoming!

    Did my last TT of the year too. Had three weeks off the TT and only riding Sunday’s. Got my arse kicked on the bunch ride Sunday gone.

    Windy AF, did a 21:48ish tonight for meh power, got what I deserved really. After I stopped and turned round my leg cramped when I unclipped too :(

    Overall I am happy with my year, my PB last year was 21:30 and I’ve gone faster than that 4-5 times and easily sub 21 twice (off the back of a good block of regular riding).

    My 25 time isn’t spectacular but that’s also due to the course more than anything.

    Little bit of position work for next year, improve elbow/pad angle as I can get numb hands, but I have a good starting point and decent adjustable bars now.
     
  12. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Cross is back and with it my weekly race report diatribe of what I think may have happened!

    First race of the season up at Newbury Racecourse, spent most of Saturday sorting out bikes and making sure I was fully packed and everything was working. Left fairly early to catch up with everyone and get my recce lap in, meant I could chill out before I had to do my warm up, which in the heat yesterday was pretty horrific in the sun. About 23c in the shade, but in the open which the whole course was as well as supremely dry, dusty and very bumpy it was pretty hard going. It's always tough going to the first round as you never quite know if you've got any form or not and hope all your kit holds up!

    Awaiting my gridding which was based on league position last year(apparently), I got called up about 25th or so which is farcical considering I came 9th, but ohwell third row.

    As the whistle went, off we went, I clipped in and immediately had to dodge the guy in front who hadn't really got going, and moved to the outside of the gravel section moving past a few riders, and settling in about 18th or 19th. Not a bad start as I usually lose a few places, but I've worked on them a bit and know I have the capability to recover.

    Through the first section I was on the wheels of a few guys I usually race with, with a few behind me, about 8 corners round and the guy in second dropped it, causing a huge hold up for the early runners allowing me to pick up a few places, as it opened up I gained a few more places but then dropped it myself on an off camber left hander where the dry cut line was like ice, luckily I took up the line so only one person snuck past as I lifted myself up. rest of the first lap I worked to the small group in front but had a few guys I was dragging forward on my wheel. With the field spreading out in front I could see I needed to move up a bit to finish where I wanted, so worked hard and as lap 2 and 3 went by a number of guys who had gone too hard started to fade in the heat with a few mechanicals chucked in to the mix.

    I was riding for these laps fairly consistent and quite a bit stronger than most of the guys around me on the straight headwind sections, but not strong enough to drop them, as the laps wemt on our little group settled into one of 5 and we were quite a way back from the group ahead. a few of this group tried to put a move to decisively drop us, but the course was not easy to drop people with no real place to get a big enough gap. I dropped my front wheel a couple of times but everyone in this group made some mistakes as did every rider from my reports from others elsewhere. As it got down to 2.5 laps to go one of our group had made a gap on the front when someone dropped it in front of me and I could not make it up, so decided at this point to sit on wheels and save myself for the last lap where I had worked out I could get a lead into the final corner.

    As the race went onto the last lap, Alex Watkins tried to get a gap, but soon realised we could close to the wheel of him, then Chris McGovern did the same, once again being shut down, I tried to keep my powder dry, and as we got into the last section I knew if I could get through on the last series of quick turns which were bumpy but my bike rode really well compared to others around me, I could get into the final hurdles first and take the line through to the finish cleanly and sprint, and so it played out like that, I put a move on Alex a quick right hander that required a bit of braking, then put the power on past the pits through the curves, cleared the hurdles, although my remount wasn't clean I started my sprint and held off the guys behind finishing 11th overall and 8th senior ahead of a number of guys who i struggled against last year.

    Know for next week I've got the legs and the course should suit me a bit better being lumpy and more technical. Going to add a few more PSI to my tyres as although they were supple the grip sometimes suddenly appeared mid corner which meant for some uneasy turns.

    This season I have a power meter which came out at 230W average, but looking into this 22% was at 350W or higher, with another 10% at 300-350W, so definitely a hard workout, peaking with my sprint at the end 930W for all of 2 seconds :D, got a new max HR out of the weekend at 200 too!

    As usual pics and ride on Strava.

    https://www.strava.com/activities/2711989113
     
  13. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Another week, another Race. Weather forecast for Sunday was full on rain, but this seemed to change as the week went on, but I went prepared with inter and full mud tyres.

    The weather didn't disappoint on Sunday with it coming down in bursts in the morning at home and local reports were the same. Got up there and rode the course, which was quite slippy in places and was thinking of going with my inter tyres, but then started to drop pressure on the rear so decided on going full muds, which worked out a treat as the rain came down in the race before mine and the course really started to cut up in places.

    Got to the start after an ok warm up and after my moaning of last week I was gridded first row and parked myself next to the V40 winner of the national trophy the day before and current league leader.

    As the whistle went the sun came out, but the ground was still mostly wet and not very grippy, I slotted in to about 12th or 13th after an average start and focused on staying here and settling/moving up as the race went on, I lost a few places on the first climb as I got forced into a rubbish line and had to unclip at the top, but got back in and got back to the group ahead. Focusing on moving up I got through the "chute" and then things started happening. Guy 2 places in front of me went flying down on the left hander and got run over by the guy behind, later finding out he ripped his valve off. This is a common occurence here with people getting too greedy. I managed to dodge this crash and get my head down to the guys I should have been ahead of or racing. A number of mechanicals over the first few laps meant I gained a few spots and I calculated I was in about 9th at about the half way point, dropping a number of people but being caught slowly by guys recovering after early issues, the laps ticked on and I kept the pace plodding along. No HR monitor this week as battery died, but knew I was going hard on the numerous climbs and recovering in between.

    About 15 minutes to go I had a big old slide out rolling over myself and snapping a pole, luckily nobody ahead or behind me but this lost me a good 10-15 seconds but my chain stayed on and I got going again. I was passed soon after by Patrick Stumpf from Sotonia who moved ahead of me last week in the last 15 minutes, so I had a target to follow, but he was unforuntately too strong and after a lap pulled away.

    With 2 laps to go I had two guys pass me who were flying, so no chance of grabbing a wheel, but the rate of attrition was showing, and I was beginning to flag a little. I had Karl Norfolk on my wheel and thought he'd get past but I managed to pull a small gap on some of the inclines. As we got on the last lap, he'd got back on my wheel so I knew he would be there at the end. I managed to take some really good lines and pushed hard where I could on the next 6-8 corners and got a bit of a gap, which I then managed to keep until 4 corners from the end, when I somehow managed to lose my front wheel. Still had a bit of a gap, until 2 corners later I lost my front wheel again and Karl was right there. I took the final corner and sprinted for the line, failing miserably and losing the spot on the line. Really frustrating as I'd had no problems with either turn up until that point.

    Finished in 12th in the end, 1 place lower than last week but with a very strong field again this week. It's not an especially strong course for me and yesterday was unfortunate in that I could have done with swapping my bike over for a clean, but no pit crew due to unavailability.

    Consistent placing though which is good and gapped the bunch behind significantly so know I can move on up, but need to get my head down into training and practising my CX skills.

    No race next week and moving house the week after, so will no doubt be time limited for said training, but I'll push on! Need to work on closing that gap to the group of riders in front and working my way back up towards the middle of the top 10.

    https://www.strava.com/activities/2731718674
     
  14. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Well after the last race I had a busy week as I moved house just over a week ago, so had a week of finishing packing and then the stress of mind and body of moving it. Followed this up with a well timed adaption week last week after quite a chunk of work in the previous 6 weeks with weekly TSS up at 700 or so for the first 4 of those and just under 600 for the two race weeks, it was definitely needed.

    Benefit of this was that on my Saturday pre race ride my legs felt very good. I got there quite early on the Sunday as it was quite a drive and didn't want to get stuck in any traffic, but the weather was dry and the course was fast and very lumpy!

    I did my usual warm up on the road today as the conditions allowed, and got to the line, ended up being gridded second row. As the whistle went I got an awful start, no real reason why, just got bogged down and then boxed in on the first second and third corners, but I stayed calm and didn't push it too hard knowing the hills would allow me to make up positions quickly, I reckon I'd dropped down to about 22nd or so after the first 3 corners, but I got my head down and got back to guys I should have been with within a lap up to about 13th or so. I settled on their wheel to recover for a bit, but the pace they were pushing settled down and we started to be caught a bit from behind and were being gapped ahead. I had sufficiently recovered after my first lap exertions and so as the second lap ended and third lap started attempted to move ahead. I got a gap up one of the climbs and then pushed on, right up until the off camber semi stepped bank which I attempted to ride for the first time this lap, aborting it the previous as the guy in front hopped off, unfortunately I came straight down in hilarious fashion getting my foot somehow stuck through my frame :D :D

    I was quickly up though and got straight back on to the guys I had broken from and had to follow them for a few corners before pushing on again and attempting to close the gap to the guys in front. I slowly reeled in 2 guys and overtook them over the next 15 minutes or so, but noticed my rear was starting to burp a little in the extreme corners and bumps (about twice a lap), so about 35 minutes in I pitted to change bikes, and my pit crew diligently pumped my tyre up for next time around. Luckily I had a big enough gap behind me, so next time around swapped bikes back over to the Canyon and carried on. After this it was a bit of a lonely race with the gap behind me staying about 15 seconds with us eyeing each other everytime we passed, and the gap to the guy in front being 20-25 seconds but not coming down. The last few laps went by generally without incident, apart from the penultimate lap when a rider decided to jump off his bike over his handlebars on an offcamber section, almost brining me down. I had to dismount quickly and probably lost a few seconds, but in the end I ploughed on through to the end finishing in 9th place overall.

    I was happy with the result as my lap times were much more consistent as was the power, and I only finished about 2m45 behind the winner which is probably the closest I've ever been to the front, whilst slowly getting more points for the league, hopefully I'll move up from 6th.

    On to our home round next weekend which I always love as I get to ride it before hand so much more, hopefully this year there won't be any handlebar mishaps :(
     
  15. Berger

    Capodecina

    Joined: May 22, 2003

    Posts: 10,295

    Location: Wigan

    Sounds good fun and I always end up playing with the gravel/cx bikes in the shops, but does it not absolutely trash the bike each event?
     
  16. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Not absolutely! Especially not the dry races, just a good hose down afterwards and regrease every few wet events and it keeps it running. Although I did have pointed out to me my rim has been dented on my hunts somewhen, I hadn't even noticed, but holding pressure on tubeless so gonna risk it as it's only a pit bike/spare wheel.
     
  17. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Round 4 - The Home event! At the league famous Droxford MX Circuit, you're going up or down and that's about it.

    The weather leading up to the race was pretty horrible but course set up Saturday was dry, course was set up and ridden, it was going to be a mudbath, my bike was clogged within the first 1/4 of the lap...

    Then overnight Saturday it rained - all night, this led to a slight course change for safety reasons, but the main elements were all there. The rain kept drizzling on down on the Sunday morning, but it wasn't too sticky luckily. The course is in 2 main sections, the upper grass field and the MX track (mud mud and more mud).

    Our club had some good results early on with a second in the U16 and a 6th in the ladies race, with lots of pitting going on, with bikes being changed every half lap for some, and then it got to my race, the previous couple of hours had dried out and the wind blown across drying out the track, this unfortunately meant it had become awful sticky clay and the number of mechs bust in the race before mine had increased dramatically. Ohwell my pit crew were there.

    I lined up second row on the grid just behind the series leader and as the whistle went I got a good start, clipping in quickly and sticking to the inside, and was up to about 5th or so, unfortunately at the next quick right I took an awful line and drifted back a few places to 12th or so. Holding my line through the next turns I knew as we got onto the MX track I could make up places like I do every year.

    And so we got to "The Bog" where the consensus was to run it , although maybe a tad slower overall than riding, fact your bike was pristine at the top meant you would be quicker over the course of the lap. I made up a good 3 or 4 places on the run up the hill (picture below of the first lap carnage, I am on the highest rider on the left)! as you may have read last year, I have a capability of moving my legs better than most CXers in my league(I'm unsure why as I don't train specifically for running, but i think I have a lightness on my feet that really helps).
    [​IMG]
    Over the top I held my position and then dropped down from Hecklers Hill into the Dipper a quick right then left descent onto grass, where my chain then decided to drop, as the pits were at the top of the hill I got running again, In hindsight this was a poor decision and I lost a couple of places, but got onto the spare bike and worked my way up to the place I was at by the end of the lap, I had strong legs today and worked to bridge the gap to 6th place. As I came through the dipper the next time around my chain stayed on, however on the 3rd and 4th laps my chain popped off again and my work to gain time on the few riders ahead kept slipping away. This time I put the chain back on and this worked out quicker.

    After this I got into a rhythm for a couple of laps, pitting after the MX circuit of the lap every lap to get a clean bike, unfortunately on the 6th lap as I was on the top of the circuit my mech hanger broke and pulled my wheel out of my frame. Once I worked out my mech had attached itself to a spoke I disconnected it and discarded my rear wheel, thinking it's easier to carry 2/3rds of a bike and began the long run to the pits. On this run my zip on my skinsuit had failed and my bare chest was showing, which was accompanied by some hilarious shouts from my club mates, it was also bloody cold into the wind! Somehow I lost no places but my work to catch up 6th who I was probably less than 10 seconds back on when it went had gone. Back onto the Canyon and I plugged away and as I got onto the MX track I noticed the guy in 6th was on his MTB, as I got to The Bog I could see him at the top, struggling with the carry and in general looking laboured. I ran hard and after my running over the top of the MX circuit the previous lap dismounted 2 more times rather than attempting to struggle and ride. This meant I was much much quicker and by the end of the 7th lap I'd closed the gap to 6th and was on his wheel.

    I could see the leader behind far enough back not to lap me and knowing that I'd have the legs to put time into 6th on the run up the hill. It was at this point he really shot off and put some effort in, probably gaining about 10 seconds or so on the grass section of the course, I didn't get too greedy, and kept it there, as the race went on the course dried out and the ride to the bottom of the run got further up the hill, as I dismounted to start the run 6th was only a few seconds ahead. by the top of the climb he was at least 10 seconds back, so I dug hard and kept this gap about 10-15 seconds but not taking any risks. Into the Dipper and my chain stayed on, but I could see coming out the climb the other side (which I despise) he was putting an effort in. as I passed the pits I was getting shouts from my crew to push on I was being caught, so I dug hard on the uphill drag and really put some strong time in, as I came back down I saw he had given up and at this point I rode steadily to the finish to come home in 6th, happy but frustrated knowing what potentially could have been if my bikes had stayed together.

    An eventful race, and good form again, just need to really work to protect msyelf on the starts, I'm not usually shy but have found myself in not great positions the last 2 races, but know for the mud to come I've got some strong legs to push on with. I was especially happy with my last 2 lap times where I was one of the quickest guys. I've already ordered a replacement mech hanger and a new GRX mech for the Canyon to hopefully stop the chain drops which I have suffered with in the past when it's got really muddy!
    Few more photos on Strava
    https://www.strava.com/activities/2787029478
     
  18. Lethal`

    Mobster

    Joined: Oct 25, 2006

    Posts: 4,752

    Sounds properly eventful! Good work.

    Was the chain dropping on both bikes? You lost the wheels?
     
  19. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth

    Yeah both bikes! Nah the wheel was recovered at the end of the race! New mech hanger and should be good to go.
     
  20. SoliD

    Capodecina

    Joined: Feb 25, 2004

    Posts: 14,685

    Location: Portsmouth