Last night was the first of four 14 mile (ok, 13.98) TT's presented by TriRochester. The punishing rolling hill course is the perfect length to train on. It really helps you dial in your speed and technique prior to some of the more important du- and triathlons. Since there were about 30 riders, they sent us off one-by-one in 30 second intervals. I was the 25th rider to be released.
I had a good ride last night, with the exception of a shifting malfunction that happened just a minute or so in. The TT starts out going down hill then turns right and goes up. I should have kept the chain in the big ring and muscled up the hill, but I figured since it was just the start of the course, it'll be better to spin up the climb. I attempted to shift to the small ring and the chain got hung up as if it were floating between the larger and the small ring. I shifted back to the big ring, but since I was at the foot of the hill, I almost came to a standstill. I pedalled, then shifted back to the small ring and made my way up the climb. I probably lost 10 seconds or so. Once over this initial hill, the course welcomes you to a wind from the SSW at about 10-13 mph. Since we were going west, the next five miles were a little tough, but after the next right turn, it felt a lot better. On this first longer stretch into the wind, just a few minutes in, I was caught by Dave Herbert. We was the 26th starter--started 30 seconds behind me. He's a force in the road racing scene--and he's 51 years old! Not 15...51! We played cat & mouse for the next 5 miles then he opened a gap on me and would finish in 32:39--the fastest time of the night (he is usually the fastest or in the top 3). No one else caught me and I passed maybe 15 of the riders that started before me.
My PR on the course is 33:37--from last season. Last night I clocked 33:47 (24.83 mph average). I was happy with the ride and think I posted the 3rd fastest time of the night. I believe Rick Hoover, aka: quadman, was 2nd with a time of 33:14. We'll have to see when the results are posted how it all played out. CLICK THIS FOR A MAP of the course.