Sporting Course: Return of the Hardrider

Yesterday evening was the Dursley Hardrider, a 25 mile time trial with a couple of horribly draggy bits. one of the bits was really weird, a 2 miles section of country lane, potholed and scarred by winter, steadily rising at around 2-3%. this is fine, but it looked like it was a downhill section; and thus played tricks on my fragile mind and race-esteem. it was a two lap course, so the second time i worked out why i was going so slowly.

the central aim for the race – apart from going as quickly as possible – was to get as low as possible. i focused as much as i could on getting my head down and keeping slippery; it wasn’t as hard as i feared and my gonadular region survived the experience both intact and undamaged. this time last year when riding my sigma i got the saddle angle wrong and it was an extremely uncomfortable experience, both during and after. no such problems yesterday, thank goodness. nevertheless, the more aggressive your position becomes, the harder it is to get and stay comparatively comfortable.

after that, i aimed to get under the hour, which would be no mean feat on a course like this. the event was won by ben anstie, who rides for adeo cadence, in 55.05, rob pears was second with 56. 28, and i came third with 57.35. this is my best finish in a hardriders event to date, and is worth lots of points. although i’ll have to be really going some to get above 5th in the district; because Derek bagged a lot of points early on in the season when i didn’t have this kind of form. there are two more events and the hillclimb, so there is certainly hope. the highest i could get is 4th, after Rob Pears, Rob Lyne and Alec Baskaya, all very quick chaps.

it’s much more difficult to read a pacing strategy on a sporting course, i went on perceived effort. for the record, these are the stats:

25.16 miles, 57.4 minutes, 26.2mph, 167bpm av, 918 ft ascent.

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