The Chuch Creek 40k ITT on Saturday, June 15th was my first individual time trial. On Thursday night I had stayed up till 1am doing what I could to turn Golden Boy into some type of time trial machine. This meant throwing on some aluminum Profile Design aerobars, moving my saddle up a little bit and putting on a bike computer. It also meant a lot of electrical tape. I borrowed a TT helmet from tank and then that was it - no windcovers, no skinsuit, no bar end shifters or brakes, no areocages and just my trusty Kyserium SL's to roll on.
I have never seen such a concentration of expensive bike stuff. It was probably no different than a big triathlon except there were no enthusies. There were about 200 people there and everyone one of them was all business. I had never seen so many P2Cs, P3C, 808s, disc wheels, tri-spokes, areobottles (didn't even know these existed), areohelmets and sweet carbon TT bikes.
I definitely looked a tab foolish.
I was the last Cat4 to go off, followed by the famale Cat1/2s. I got to the line about 30 sec just before I was supposed to roll out. I was asked if I wanted a 'hold' - that is someone to hold my bike up by the seat so I could start clipped in. I said 'yes' but was a little rushed and the officials were giving me instructions at the same time so I wasn't really paying attention to what I was doing. I couldn't get my balance on the bike and had to clip out as I almost fell over.
Getting back in just as the starter told me to go I headed out into a steady headwind. I stood and powered up to speed and then settled into my saddle and laid out in the aerobars. It was going to be a long hour of riding and I really wasn't sure what to expect. Well as soon and I got into my TT position I got a little surprise - I felt like I was sliding back off of my bike. I pulled my butt up a little forward but felt it slide back again.
I touched my rails and saw that my saddle was no longer all the way forward as I had thought but all the way BACK.
For the non-bikers let me explain. When you do a TT you want to ride in the position that allows you to get the most power while staying in your aerobars. This happens to be on the nose (skinny part) of the saddle. This is not comfortable. Because my seat was about 5cm further back than it should I have been I was now sitting not on the nose but the very tip. Sitting might be the wrong word.
I was going into a headwind, most of my body weight pressed onto a patch of skin about the size of a postage stamp and I had about 20 more miles of this. Oh, and if I slowed down I was going to get passed by the women riders.
I was not happy.
We really didn't get a good tail wind till about 18 miles into the race. A little before that the pain overcame my competitiveness and I decided to just sit up. I felt like I had sunburn just behind my nuts. The road was deserted and I had really nothing to focus on so I more or less just jogged it in. Jog might be an exaggeration but the whole thing was about a 7 of 10 on the effort scale. A couple of the faster women passed me in the last few miles but I was beyond caring. It wasn't my day - again.
I came in 20th (of maybe 30?) in 1:05:15.
What did I learn? Time Trialing is a different sport.
On the upside I did get to meet a few more of the LSV teammates.
I tried to put a positive spin on it but really after 2 DNFs and a really slow ITT - I was ready for the season to be over. I was looking at tomorrows crit as just one more race to get out of the way.