Sunday, 26 February 2012

Herne Hill 40km bike time trial

I always feel a bit anxious when it comes to bike time trials. Simply because cycling had always been my weakest leg in a triathlon. But lately with the added bike mileage, I'm slowly gaining some confidence in my cycling ability.

With the time trial on Sunday, I skipped the hills ride on Saturday and rode 4 hours on Freeway South instead. It's always nice to greet fellow triathletes ploughing through the path on both directions. I had two big dinners on Friday and Saturday (thanks Jasmine and Michael for having us at your place!), which probably gave me more than enough carbs for this race.

I met up with Bill and Shao at East Perth in the morning, had a quick coffee stop at MilkD Maylands and then we rode to Herne Hill. Riding for over 50 minutes before my time trial got me even more nervous as to whether I would have any energy left, but the boys were great, they towed me for most of the ride.

Got to Herne Hill primary school for the registration, a quick toilet break and soon it was time to start. Shao then went home. Despite the name of the venue, the course is pretty flat - rectangular shape with four 90 degree turns and we go through it 4 times. The wind was pretty calm when we started but it soon picked up towards the last couple of laps.

I was aiming for 70 minutes, which is just over 34kph. But I was averaging just over 35kph, which made me quite happy. I even passed two of the cyclists who started just before me, which rarely happens. I'm beginning to enjoy riding with the big crank, I rode with it throughout the course. At the end of the last lap, I moved to an even bigger gear and tried to hammer towards the finish, in hope of clocking a higher average speed.

In the end, I clocked 1:07:37 - an average pace of 35.5kph, really happy with the result! One area which I need to continuously improve on is taking the tight corners with more speed and confidence. Although, after the race, while we were chatting with one of the marshals, we saw a girl took a corner, skidded and fell. Luckily she wasn't hurt too badly.

With tired legs, I rode with Bill (actually behind Bill for most of it) back to East Perth. I'm beginning to enjoy these bike time trials. So much so, that I have another one in Wandi in two weeks, see you then!

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