The Rides

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The Ride. It is the cathedral of our sport, where we worship at the altar of the Man with the Hammer. It is the end to our means. Indeed, The Bike may be the central tool to our sport, but to turn the pedals is to experience the sensation of freedom, of flight. It is all for The Ride.

The world is overflowing with small, twisty roads that capture our collective imagination as cyclists. We spend our lifetimes searching out the best routes and rides; we pore over maps, we share with our fellow disciples, we talk to non-cycling locals all in pursuit of the Perfect Ride.

The Rides is devoted entirely to the best routes and rides around the world. Some are races or cyclosportives, others feature in the Classics and stages of The Great Races, while others still are little-known gems, discovered through careful meditation on The V. Be warned: these rides are not your average Sunday Afternoon spin; these rides are the best and most difficult rides in the word – they represent the rites of passage into La Vie Velominatus. It is to be taken for granted that these rides require loads of Rule #5, many of them Rule #10, and all of them are best enjoyed in Rule #9 conditions. They have been shared by you, the community. The Rides also features articles devoted to the greatest rides and providess a forum for sharing other rides for discussion.

If you’d like to submit a ride or an article about your own favorite ride, please feel free to send it to us and we’ll do our best to work with you to include it.

Haleakala

Category: Grimpeur / Distance: 56km / Location: Paia, Maui, Hawaii, USA

haleakala

Haleakala is simultaneously the longest paved continuous climb in the world as well as the shortest ascent from sea level to 10,000 feet in the world. Though not terribly steep, this is a long, grinding climb that will reduce a strong rider to a whimpering lump.

To put the effort in perspective, this climb is 60km long a an average of 6% with two pitches as steep as 17%. That translates to somewhere between 3 or more hours of nonstop climbing, usually in Maui’s direct heat and often into a whipping headwind that spins around into a headwind no matter which direction the switchbacks take you.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/50412514

Liege-Bastogne-Liege

Category: Rouleur / Distance: 265 / Location: Liege, Belgium

lbl

Liege-Bastogne-Liege is not only La Doyenne, the oldest of the Classics, but also represents perhaps the most demanding course in cycling. The 280 km, 3000m vertical route starts with an easy ride out from Liege to Bastogne which lulls riders into a false sense of security; the hills are frequent, but none of them terribly demanding. Into Bastogne, and the story changes on the way back to Liege with 9 categorized climbs in the second half, including the fearsome Côte de la Redoute and the Côte de Saint-Nicolas.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/58053308/

Paris-Roubaix

Category: Hardman / Distance: 265 / Location: Compiégne, France

paris-roubaix

L’enfur du Nord. The Hell of The North. The Queen of the Classics. This isn’t a ride over the stones from your local brick-paved roads. You think climbs are what make a ride tough? We’ve got news for you: this is the hardest ride on the planet and it boasts a maximum elevation of 55 meters. These are vicious, brutal stones; the kind that will stretch each kilometer to their full length, the kind of stones that you will feel long after the rattling of the bars has stopped. These stones will change you. Forever.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/58052610/

Guide: Pavé Cycling Classics

Mortirolo/Gavia Loop

Category: Grimpeur / Distance: 115km / Location: Bormio, Italy / Contributor: Joe

The Mortirolo is perhaps the most feared pass in Western Europe, and the Gavia the most storied. Given their proximity to each other, its a wonder why this isn’t the most talked-about ride in Italy. Maybe it is; its impossible to say without being Italian. The loop nature of this ride makes it feasible as a solo escapade, but any ride with the kind of stats this one bears – 3200 meters ascended in 115 kilometers including the viscously steep Mortirolo – is best enjoyed with a riding partner or support car.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/59027020/

200 on 100

Category: Grimpeur / Distance: 330km / Location: Vernon, VT / Contributor: cdelinks

“Dumptruck of Awesome” has become the catch-phrase associated with this brutally hard, yet strikingly beautiful 330 kilometer (200 mile) ride down Vermont Route 100.  This ride was made popular during the summer of 2011 when Ted King, Tim Johnson, and a local amateur cyclist, Ryan Kelly, documented this ride on film. The ride starts on the Canadian border and finishes on the Massachusetts border.  With over 2500 meters of climbing on this 330 kilometer ride, you will need to pack a few lunches to get through this one.  Do this ride in the Fall, and the foliage might be beautiful enough to distract you from the horrible pain you will most certainly suffer.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/58052808/

De Ronde Van West Portlandia

Category: Grimpeur / Distance: 76km / Location: Portland, Oregon, USA

A ride that officially “never happens” each spring, this 76 km route charts a course through Portland’s West Hills, paying homage to the European Spring Classics. Approximately 1,800 meters of paved and unpaved climbs are spread throughout the course, with several sections reaching grades of over 20%. More information can be found at Ronde PDX.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/15276210

Seattle Master Urban Ride

Category: Rouleur / Distance: 130km / Location: Seattle, Washington, USA

seattleronde

This is perhaps the most challenging urban route in Seattle, hitting three of the big hills that define Seattle’s topography. The route starts and ends on Phinney Ridge, but hits the climbs of Interlaken and Alder Street/Lake Dell Drive on its way to Mercer Island, before coming back to hit Queen Anne and Magnolia, weaving its way up each of these hills as many times as possible via the steepest route available before the finale to the north via Golden Gardens, Blue Ridge Drive, and Carkeek Park. Panoramic views of the Cascades, Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, The Olympic Penninsula and Puget Sound makes this a standout Urban ride.

Route: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/57732282

  1. @Teocalli

    RVV in tandem with @chris

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    That can’t have been this year, I don’t remember there being any sun! I’m not sure I remember smiling either.

    It was great to ride with you and I love the fact that despite failing to meet up at the start we just bumped into each other at the second feed station! The odds on that have already been discussed by our statistics nerds but what were the chances that I would not only bump into @Teocalli at the feed station but I’d also bump into @brett and William from Pavé Cycling Classics and Malteni in a crowd of moshing Belgian farmer boys in front of a big screen on the Oude Kwaremont?

    Despite losing him at the first feed station and not seeing him again until 45 minutes after I’d finished, my son Angus loved it and is keen to do it again next year. “Dad, can we do the longer route?” “No”. I suspect he’ll properly rip my legs off next year as no amount of riding in Doha on the flat can prepare you for the cobbled bergs. My wife is also considering the shorter route.




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  2. @chris

    Yeah it looks nice and warm there! I said after the event that I was now officially too old for cobbles and to shoot me if I talk of entering next year. However, VMW clearly knows me better as she took a card for the hotel we stayed in for booking next year!

    I was glad I fitted that twiddle gearing – did I mention that?………………….




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  3. Because I’m terminally stupid, I signed up to race a category Elite, 1, 2 & 3 crit on Friday night.

    My average speed for the race? 47.5kph. Holy fuckballs there are some strong dudes around here.

    Doing it again on Friday.




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  4. @RobSandy

    Because I’m terminally stupid, I signed up to race a category Elite, 1, 2 & 3 crit on Friday night.

    My average speed for the race? 47.5kph. Holy fuckballs there are some strong dudes around here.

    Doing it again on Friday.

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    Nice one. I’m going to cruise down to the coast tomorrow as the forecast is nice and sunny – and warm. My average speed will NOT be 47 kph.




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  5. @Teocalli

    @RobSandy

    Because I’m terminally stupid, I signed up to race a category Elite, 1, 2 & 3 crit on Friday night.

    My average speed for the race? 47.5kph. Holy fuckballs there are some strong dudes around here.

    Doing it again on Friday.

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    Nice one. I’m going to cruise down to the coast tomorrow as the forecast is nice and sunny – and warm. My average speed will NOT be 47 kph.

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    Supposed to be lovely the rest of the week – after today when it’s going to drizzle.

    Training ride tomorrow, perhaps a short blast on the turbo Thursday, short crit Friday night and a road race Sunday.

    Hoping I can do a bit better than packfill in the RR but we’ll see.




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  6. @RobSandy

    I’m doing the Hot Chillee London Paris at the end of July and need to do a couple of Quali Rides of 100 Km and 100 Mi at a decent pace for ride group selection. Need to get them in before the end of May and my longer winter rides were all pretty slow as I always seemed to be plugging a strong headwind. So tomorrow will be a non direct route to Emsworth all being well for one of those.




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  7. @Teocalli

    @RobSandy

    I’m doing the Hot Chillee London Paris at the end of July and need to do a couple of Quali Rides of 100 Km and 100 Mi at a decent pace for ride group selection. Need to get them in before the end of May and my longer winter rides were all pretty slow as I always seemed to be plugging a strong headwind. So tomorrow will be a non direct route to Emsworth all being well for one of those.

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    Nice. That’ll be fun. Hope you get some good weather.

    I’ve entered a road race around the Vale of Glamorgan mid July. I forgot when entering that

    1. It’s a Cat 2/3/4 race, not a Cat 3/4 race as I’m used to. This means it’ll be 110-12 kms rather than the 80-90kms I’m used to.

    2. I have my final assessment for chartership at the end of June so I doubt I’ll be fully focussed on training through June.

    So July the 15th could be a nice day getting my head kicked in, so to speak.




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  8. The end days are here. Repent. Repent.

    Look at the state of this podium headwear…




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  9. @RobSandy

    The end days are here. Repent. Repent.

    Look at the state of this podium headwear…

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    Bob is smiling because a) he just won the oldest Monument, and b) because Lefevre would never allow him to wear such a twattish-looking cap on the podium, and c) Bob is a professional cycling, not a teenage skateboarder.




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  10. @wiscot

    @RobSandy

    The end days are here. Repent. Repent.

    Look at the state of this podium headwear…

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    Bob is smiling because a) he just won the oldest Monument, and b) because Lefevre would never allow him to wear such a twattish-looking cap on the podium, and c) Bob is a professional cycling, not a teenage skateboarder.

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    Bob gets a pass for winning a monument and having great hair.

    The other two should throw those caps in a hole. A deep hole.




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  11. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    @RobSandy

    The end days are here. Repent. Repent.

    Look at the state of this podium headwear…

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    Bob is smiling because a) he just won the oldest Monument, and b) because Lefevre would never allow him to wear such a twattish-looking cap on the podium, and c) Bob is a professional cycling, not a teenage skateboarder.

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    Bob gets a pass for winning a monument and having great hair.

    The other two should throw those caps in a hole. A deep hole.

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    A very deep hole because they make you look like an . . . asshole.




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  12. I’ve now seen the results sheet and am pleased to say I scooped my first road race points of my career on Sunday. Ok, it was only a single point but I’ll take it.

    The circuit had a short but steep hill, about 1km at 6%. Each time I managed this pretty well, getting to the front and sliding back through the bunch slightly during the climb (I ain’t no climber). The 3rd and last time I did the same, but hadn’t realised how reduced the bunch had got and I lost contact just before the summit.

    There followed a frantic downhill chase with 2 other guys and I managed to get back into the pack and spent the next 20 minutes as the finish approached trying to work my way up the bunch. As we pulled into the finish, a 700m drag at about 3% I put the hammer down, with everything I had left, and from a long way back I got in touching distance of the lead group, crossing the line just behind.

    If only I had been able to get in a better position prior to the sprint. There we go, that’s racing.

    https://www.strava.com/activities/1524787091/overview




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  13. Oh, and this is me chilling at the front early on in the race. I’m in the white/blue/red kit sitting 5th at this point.




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  14. @RobSandy

    Impressive stuff and a nice looking course (if you like hills), chapeau.

    Is that real power on your Strava or a Strava estimate that doesn’t take into account riding in the bunch?




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  15. @chris

    @RobSandy

    Impressive stuff and a nice looking course (if you like hills), chapeau.

    Is that real power on your Strava or a Strava estimate that doesn’t take into account riding in the bunch?

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    The power is model’s own mate.

    I have had a Stages since last summer.




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  16. @RobSandy

    Frank would probably poke us in the eye with an old spoke for talking about power but I don’t think he’s paying attention.

    That’s a pretty impressive set of numbers, both in terms of the whole ride but also the last few minutes.

    I’ve had a Stages PM for a few years, it’s a great bit of kit but it has a huge appetite for batteries.




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  17. @chris

    @RobSandy

    Frank would probably poke us in the eye with an old spoke for talking about power but I don’t think he’s paying attention.

    That’s a pretty impressive set of numbers, both in terms of the whole ride but also the last few minutes.

    I’ve had a Stages PM for a few years, it’s a great bit of kit but it has a huge appetite for batteries.

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    Frank ain’t here!

    Power is a funny thing for Road Races – there was a lot of time when I was rolling along in the bunch doing less than 150w, but also times were I was doing 400w + for a couple of minutes. It’s very stop/start. Bearing that in mind my average power wasn’t actually that high. I also never really opened my full sprint (1500w+) as the finish was a long drag and I was doing my damndest to pass as many people as possible.

    Only time I can think of it being any use is if you’re out in a breakaway and want to try and keep a consistent effort going. This ride was a more consistent effort, but obviously a lot shorter (An E123 crit).

    https://www.strava.com/activities/1506498581

    I’m glad you’ve said that – my Stages chomps batteries like nobodies business. Glad it’s not just me.

    I’d quite like to do either a turbo-based FTP test, or better, get out on the road and do a proper TT effort to see where my FTP has gone recently because I feel in super form right now.




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  18. @RobSandy

    It’s not much use during a race I agree.

    But it is useful to look at afterwards and see what was happening at different times so you can train appropriately. Also to compare different races and efforts.

    I’m yet to complete a race this year. First one was called off because of the Beast from the East, the second was stopped after 12 minutes when a guy crashed and sadly died of a heart attack.

    Next chance on Bank Holiday Sunday but it’s a flat track on an old airstrip (the one they use for Top Gear) so it will be a bit of a lottery I guess.




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  19. @ChrisO

    @RobSandy

    It’s not much use during a race I agree.

    But it is useful to look at afterwards and see what was happening at different times so you can train appropriately. Also to compare different races and efforts.

    I’m yet to complete a race this year. First one was called off because of the Beast from the East, the second was stopped after 12 minutes when a guy crashed and sadly died of a heart attack.

    Next chance on Bank Holiday Sunday but it’s a flat track on an old airstrip (the one they use for Top Gear) so it will be a bit of a lottery I guess.

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    Yeah, it’s not like you look down at your Garmin and think ‘Oh no, I’m doing FTP x 120%’ when there’s a kick in the speed of the bunch, you just go with it. Or don’t.

    But I’ve had a good look through the data after, good to see how much of the race I was able to ride at ‘audax’ pace (<220w) and save energy for when I needed it (the climbs and the final).

    We had a race called off because of the snow, so I’ve done 2 road races and 2 E123 crits. I couldn’t decide whether to race the 3/4 races or the E123’s (being a Cat 3) but the 3/4 races have been horribly negative and there was a massive pile up last week. The E123’s have been fast a furious, but smooth and safe. And I reckon with a bit of luck I could scoop some points in one.

    Are you TTing this year Chris?




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  20. @RobSandy

    Not seriously TTing this year. I’ve actually sold my TT bike.

    I think my biggest problem with TTs is my position – I’m not going to make significant gains in my FTP – and the problem with the Trinity being so integrated is that it’s difficult to use other setups.

    So I’m going to get a proper bike fit and recommendation on a new bike and work on that for next year, assuming budget allows it (looking OK at the moment, we have lots of projects happening or on the cards – the irony being that means more travel and therefore less training).

    Having said that, I fancy a new road bike too now that they are allowing disc brakes in races.

    But for now I’m going to concentrate on the LVRC races for the summer, and will just do our club TTs on my road bike.

    I’ve marked a couple of open TTs that have road bike categories too.




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  21. @ChrisO

    @RobSandy

    Not seriously TTing this year. I’ve actually sold my TT bike.

    I think my biggest problem with TTs is my position – I’m not going to make significant gains in my FTP – and the problem with the Trinity being so integrated is that it’s difficult to use other setups.

    So I’m going to get a proper bike fit and recommendation on a new bike and work on that for next year, assuming budget allows it (looking OK at the moment, we have lots of projects happening or on the cards – the irony being that means more travel and therefore less training).

    Having said that, I fancy a new road bike too now that they are allowing disc brakes in races.

    But for now I’m going to concentrate on the LVRC races for the summer, and will just do our club TTs on my road bike.

    I’ve marked a couple of open TTs that have road bike categories too.

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    There is a point where you can only go more aero. I’m still improving FTP, I think (I don’t test as regularly as I should).

    I’m still doing them on a road bike with clip-ons, however this year I’ll be going from my old alloy F75 to my new AR1, with super speedy aero wheels, so I’m expecting that will make a difference. Going to do a bit of experimentation out on the road over the next couple of weeks to get a decent position and plan my pacing.

    Sub 22 minute 10 is the aim. Should be doable with an FTP of about 320, right?




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  22. @RobSandy

    @ChrisO

    @RobSandy

    Not seriously TTing this year. I’ve actually sold my TT bike.

    I think my biggest problem with TTs is my position – I’m not going to make significant gains in my FTP – and the problem with the Trinity being so integrated is that it’s difficult to use other setups.

    So I’m going to get a proper bike fit and recommendation on a new bike and work on that for next year, assuming budget allows it (looking OK at the moment, we have lots of projects happening or on the cards – the irony being that means more travel and therefore less training).

    Having said that, I fancy a new road bike too now that they are allowing disc brakes in races.

    But for now I’m going to concentrate on the LVRC races for the summer, and will just do our club TTs on my road bike.

    I’ve marked a couple of open TTs that have road bike categories too.

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    There is a point where you can only go more aero. I’m still improving FTP, I think (I don’t test as regularly as I should).

    I’m still doing them on a road bike with clip-ons, however this year I’ll be going from my old alloy F75 to my new AR1, with super speedy aero wheels, so I’m expecting that will make a difference. Going to do a bit of experimentation out on the road over the next couple of weeks to get a decent position and plan my pacing.

    Sub 22 minute 10 is the aim. Should be doable with an FTP of about 320, right?

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    For sure. My PB is 21:58 and that was one of my first 10s on a TT bike. That was 334 watts average.

    I haven’t done many 10s since then, other than our local club ones which are on more sporting courses and I use my road bike.

    The idea of getting up at stupid o’clock to drive for an hour and ride for 22 minutes began to strike me as a little odd.




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  23. @ChrisO

    Sub 22 minute 10 is the aim. Should be doable with an FTP of about 320, right?

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    For sure. My PB is 21:58 and that was one of my first 10s on a TT bike. That was 334 watts average.

    I haven’t done many 10s since then, other than our local club ones which are on more sporting courses and I use my road bike.

    The idea of getting up at stupid o’clock to drive for an hour and ride for 22 minutes began to strike me as a little odd.

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    That’s a really good PB to have. Imagine if it was 22:01? Mine is currently 22:16.

    I know exactly what you mean about riding 10’s – it’s a lot of faff for not much riding. Most of the ones I ride are midweek evenings in the summer, so it’s not so bad. And if I can ride to the start I do.

    I just try not to overload with them – I only did 6 in total last year and I’ll probably do the same or less this year.

    I’m planning to do a bit of a position test/power test tonight on the new bike, so I’ll have a better idea how I’m going after that. I seem to be on good nick, picking up KOMs every time I ride at the moment.




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  24. Good to see @DavidHill pinning a number on at the LVRC on Sunday. Good race but a 3 mile circuit around an aerodrome is almost guaranteed to be one for the bunch monkeys.

    And stupid me had managed to pack everything except my jersey so it was looking like I might have to race in one of David’s spares for a while, but fortunately a club mate was in the earlier race and I was able to borrow his.

    Must be something to do with #Rule 13.




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  25. @ChrisO

    Good to see @DavidHill pinning a number on at the LVRC on Sunday. Good race but a 3 mile circuit around an aerodrome is almost guaranteed to be one for the bunch monkeys.

    And stupid me had managed to pack everything except my jersey so it was looking like I might have to race in one of David’s spares for a while, but fortunately a club mate was in the earlier race and I was able to borrow his.

    Must be something to do with #Rule 13.

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    Chapeau to both of you – looks a hard race. I don’t beat myself too much if I get into a break that gets caught – its attacks that animate the race.

    On Friday night I managed to get into the break again (although, as the break was so big and the rest of the field so small I probably just stayed with the bunch, tbh), and even got in a 2 man attack out the front for a while; I had a strong teammate with me so was trying to do everything I could to make it easier for him.

    Seemed to work, he finished 5th with all the big hitters (including one Elite rider), and I rolled in just after to take 10th.




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  26. @ChrisO

    @RobSandy

    @ChrisO

    @RobSandy

    Not seriously TTing this year. I’ve actually sold my TT bike.

    I think my biggest problem with TTs is my position – I’m not going to make significant gains in my FTP – and the problem with the Trinity being so integrated is that it’s difficult to use other setups.

    So I’m going to get a proper bike fit and recommendation on a new bike and work on that for next year, assuming budget allows it (looking OK at the moment, we have lots of projects happening or on the cards – the irony being that means more travel and therefore less training).

    Having said that, I fancy a new road bike too now that they are allowing disc brakes in races.

    But for now I’m going to concentrate on the LVRC races for the summer, and will just do our club TTs on my road bike.

    I’ve marked a couple of open TTs that have road bike categories too.

    0

    There is a point where you can only go more aero. I’m still improving FTP, I think (I don’t test as regularly as I should).

    I’m still doing them on a road bike with clip-ons, however this year I’ll be going from my old alloy F75 to my new AR1, with super speedy aero wheels, so I’m expecting that will make a difference. Going to do a bit of experimentation out on the road over the next couple of weeks to get a decent position and plan my pacing.

    Sub 22 minute 10 is the aim. Should be doable with an FTP of about 320, right?

    0

    For sure. My PB is 21:58 and that was one of my first 10s on a TT bike. That was 334 watts average.

    I haven’t done many 10s since then, other than our local club ones which are on more sporting courses and I use my road bike.

    The idea of getting up at stupid o’clock to drive for an hour and ride for 22 minutes began to strike me as a little odd.

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    21.58 is/was my PB for a 10 too. Can’t remember the year, but it was on the GD 10 course at Langbank beside the River Clyde. Course was a Y shape with three roundabouts to negotiate – first one you basically rode through out and back, but the other two were basically 360 degree turns which really killed your speed. I do remember it was done on a regular steel road bike. No areo anything bar a skinsuit. Good times (and happy memories) indeed.




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  27. @ChrisO

    Was that Dunsfold? Not far from us so I may pop over if you go there again.




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  28. @wiscot

    21.58 is/was my PB for a 10 too. Can’t remember the year, but it was on the GD 10 course at Langbank beside the River Clyde. Course was a Y shape with three roundabouts to negotiate – first one you basically rode through out and back, but the other two were basically 360 degree turns which really killed your speed. I do remember it was done on a regular steel road bike. No areo anything bar a skinsuit. Good times (and happy memories) indeed.

    I done some sums and I reckon that on a TT bike, with aerobars and the whole aero gubbins you could probably knock a minute, maybe 1:30 off that time.
    Meaning, it was a super strong ride. Do you remember how you placed with that time on that course? Must have been competitive.
    I’m hoping to do my first sub-22 minute 10 this Saturday. I did 22:16 last year and my new bike/wheels feel SO much faster on that sort of terrain. Plus I seem to be holding some good form right now. Can’t wait.



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  29. @Teocalli

    @ChrisO

    Was that Dunsfold? Not far from us so I may pop over if you go there again.

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    Indeed it was. It’s part of the LVRC series for the region. Quite a few at Hog Hill and there’s one down near Lewes and then the season finale that we promote on the Bletchingly course, but I don’t think there are any more down that way.

    There’s a midweek evening Vets series at Dunsfold but that’s part of the Surrey League so you need a BC race licence, and for the few races I do under BC it just isn’t worth the cost of the licence and then also subscribing to the race league.




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  30. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    21.58 is/was my PB for a 10 too. Can’t remember the year, but it was on the GD 10 course at Langbank beside the River Clyde. Course was a Y shape with three roundabouts to negotiate – first one you basically rode through out and back, but the other two were basically 360 degree turns which really killed your speed. I do remember it was done on a regular steel road bike. No areo anything bar a skinsuit. Good times (and happy memories) indeed.

    I done some sums and I reckon that on a TT bike, with aerobars and the whole aero gubbins you could probably knock a minute, maybe 1:30 off that time.
    Meaning, it was a super strong ride. Do you remember how you placed with that time on that course? Must have been competitive.
    I’m hoping to do my first sub-22 minute 10 this Saturday. I did 22:16 last year and my new bike/wheels feel SO much faster on that sort of terrain. Plus I seem to be holding some good form right now. Can’t wait.
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    I can’t remember. It may have even been a club-only race. The course headed west then returned eastwards and in the west of Scotland the prevailing wind was always from the west. I must have just had a good night. That being said, there were lots of opportunities to race open and club events back then so I likely rode at least 15-20 10s a year.

    Man, getting under 21 minutes would have been a thrill!. My PB for a 25 was on a similar set up on a course that overlapped much of the 10 course. 57:40 – and that involved contact with roundabouts 13 times and a course that had some real drags.

    Best 50 was a very annoying 2:00:24 done on a TT bike, areo bars, but regular wheels near Stirling.Half a second faster per mile and I’d have dipped under the 2hr mark!

    Unless it was a hyper strong field, I was a regular top 5 rider, winning a handful of races each year, and being a regular top 3. Good times and happy memories!




    0
  31. @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.




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  32. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Chapeau, well done – that’s a big chunk of time to improve by.

    I did our club 10 yesterday but we use a very lumpy course and I’m on my road bike now so was pleased with 25:24 @341 watts NP, given that the winner on a TT bike was 24:48.




    0
  33. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Awesome! I’d say if the stars align you could go sub 21.

    Did the Bear 100 gravel ride in Laona, WI yesterday. 108 miles in 7hrs 4 mins. Toughest ride ever and this was the 4th time I’ve done it. 90-95% on gravel, very undulating course. Unsupported ride too! Looking forward to doing it in the fall!




    1
  34. @wiscot

    @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Awesome! I’d say if the stars align you could go sub 21.

    Did the Bear 100 gravel ride in Laona, WI yesterday. 108 miles in 7hrs 4 mins. Toughest ride ever and this was the 4th time I’ve done it. 90-95% on gravel, very undulating course. Unsupported ride too! Looking forward to doing it in the fall!

    0

    Top effort to both. Chapeaux.




    0
  35. @wiscot

    @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Awesome! I’d say if the stars align you could go sub 21.

    Did the Bear 100 gravel ride in Laona, WI yesterday. 108 miles in 7hrs 4 mins. Toughest ride ever and this was the 4th time I’ve done it. 90-95% on gravel, very undulating course. Unsupported ride too! Looking forward to doing it in the fall!

    0

    You always think you can go faster, don’t you?

    I think I’ve added 10w to my power for that duration since last summer, but I reckon the new bike/wheels/aero position is worth about another 25w. So I’m not going to make another massive gain like that again!

    Should also point out, bearing in mind what site we’re on, that I absolutely emptied the tank for the last 2kms. Couldn’t see properly, nausea, the full Rule #5 works.




    0
  36. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Awesome! I’d say if the stars align you could go sub 21.

    Did the Bear 100 gravel ride in Laona, WI yesterday. 108 miles in 7hrs 4 mins. Toughest ride ever and this was the 4th time I’ve done it. 90-95% on gravel, very undulating course. Unsupported ride too! Looking forward to doing it in the fall!

    0

    You always think you can go faster, don’t you?

    I think I’ve added 10w to my power for that duration since last summer, but I reckon the new bike/wheels/aero position is worth about another 25w. So I’m not going to make another massive gain like that again!

    Should also point out, bearing in mind what site we’re on, that I absolutely emptied the tank for the last 2kms. Couldn’t see properly, nausea, the full Rule #5 works.

    0

    What courses are there around you? Any good “fast” ones?

    I hear you on the nausea thing. I knew I’d tried hard when I finished and was lightheaded for a while.




    0
  37. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Hangonaminute. 10km in 21.22? That would be violating Rule #68. If it is 10miles in 21.22 it’s of course a great achievement but then you are deliberately violating Rule #24? Or was it 10km of vertical ascent in 21 hours and 22 minutes (still awesome)!




    0
  38. @wiscot

    0

    What courses are there around you? Any good “fast” ones?

    I hear you on the nausea thing. I knew I’d tried hard when I finished and was lightheaded for a while.

    The course I rode Saturday (R10/17a) is fast, as is the R10/22. The R10/22 uses a lot of the same road as the R25/3H 25 mile course which is known as one of the fastest 25’s in the country. Biablocki went sub-43 minutes on it last week.
    Here’s my strava file for the course – there are a couple of drags where you have to go a bit slower but they are a shallow gradient, and pay you back on the way back down.
    Towards the end I kept in the same gear and basically pedalled as hard and as fast as I could – you can see my cadence going up and up. Interestingly, the winner Chris Gibbard did the opposite – for the last 2 kms he rode an unusually low cadence, like 86rpm. I’ll have to ask him if it was a strategy.



    0
  39. @KogaLover

    @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    Update to my PB as of yesterday – I took advantage of what I thought was decent conditions and rode 21:22 for a 10.

    Now wondering how I could go sub-21.

    For ChrisO, my average power was about 330w.

    0

    Hangonaminute. 10km in 21.22? That would be violating Rule #68. If it is 10miles in 21.22 it’s of course a great achievement but then you are deliberately violating Rule #24? Or was it 10km of vertical ascent in 21 hours and 22 minutes (still awesome)!




    0

    I think a 10 mile TT gets a pass from Rule #24 because of tradition and that.

    Think of it as a 16.14 km TT, if it’d make you happier.




    0
  40. @RobSandy

    I think a 10 mile TT gets a pass from Rule #24 because of tradition and that.

    Think of it as a 16.14 km TT, if it’d make you happier.

    Thinking of it as a 16.14 km TT is wrong. It’s been a staple of the British club scene since before Napoleon so it’s got to be in miles.

    If you’re some sort of Rule #24 fundamentalist and get offended by Imperial measurements, you could refer to it as a Ten.




    0
  41. No matter what the relationship is/will be between the UK and the EU, TT distances will ALWAYS be measured in miles. 10, 25, 50, 100 miles. not 16, 40, 80 and 120kms. Screw the Rules on this one.

    Sub 43 mins? That’s crazy. And that’s technology too. There was no way back in the day before all the aero stuff that you could do a sub 43 min 25 (legally, that is)

    In 1978 Alf Engers went sub 50 for the first time with 49.24. That record stood for 12 years until Pete Longbottom broke it with 49.15 in 1990. I imagine the technology changed a bit in those years! Imagine too, what times Engers could have done on a low profile bike with TT bars and a disc wheel, helmet etc.

    This is worth a peek for the pictures alone: http://www.ttlegends.org/




    0
  42. @chris

    @RobSandy

    I think a 10 mile TT gets a pass from Rule #24 because of tradition and that.

    Think of it as a 16.14 km TT, if it’d make you happier.

    Thinking of it as a 16.14 km TT is wrong. It’s been a staple of the British club scene since before Napoleon so it’s got to be in miles.

    If you’re some sort of Rule #24 fundamentalist and get offended by Imperial measurements, you could refer to it as a Ten.

    0

    @wiscot

    You want to direct this vitriol at @KogaLover, not me!

    I agree 100% that British TT distances are always miles, regardless of the Rules.

    I just did some sums again and to ride a 50 minute 25 with no aero kit would require you to do at least 450w or maybe more, and also have a whole lot of V at your disposal. I doubt Marcin was within 100w of that to ride sub 43. A friend of mine did 46:53 the same day putting out nearly 350w and he’s particularly non-aero.

    What I like about TTing though, is you know the effort to produce those good times remains the same regardless of the kit in use. To get to the top of the TT game in any era you had to be prepared to turn yourself inside out and then some.

    What’s not to love about that?




    0
  43. @RobSandy

    @chris

    @RobSandy

    I think a 10 mile TT gets a pass from Rule #24 because of tradition and that.

    Think of it as a 16.14 km TT, if it’d make you happier.

    Thinking of it as a 16.14 km TT is wrong. It’s been a staple of the British club scene since before Napoleon so it’s got to be in miles.

    If you’re some sort of Rule #24 fundamentalist and get offended by Imperial measurements, you could refer to it as a Ten.

    0

    @wiscot

    You want to direct this vitriol at @KogaLover, not me!

    I agree 100% that British TT distances are always miles, regardless of the Rules.

    I just did some sums again and to ride a 50 minute 25 with no aero kit would require you to do at least 450w or maybe more, and also have a whole lot of V at your disposal. I doubt Marcin was within 100w of that to ride sub 43. A friend of mine did 46:53 the same day putting out nearly 350w and he’s particularly non-aero.

    What I like about TTing though, is you know the effort to produce those good times remains the same regardless of the kit in use. To get to the top of the TT game in any era you had to be prepared to turn yourself inside out and then some.

    What’s not to love about that?

    0

    Oh no! I wasn’t aiming at you! I was just picking up the thread!

    Yeah, I loved the TT game. Equipment-wise in the 80s, most of us were on a pretty level playing field equipment wise – regular bikes, nice wheels, skinsuits, maybe an aero helmet. TT bars and discs started coming in 89/90 but were really expensive. Nowadays everyone’s riding damn near pro-level bikes and gear.

    I also liked the honesty of it all. Your time was your time. No sitting in or drafting. AFAIK, it was pretty clean too. A few guys might have used an inhaler, but the “rewards” (prize money) was so pitiful. 120 riders at maybe 5 pounds each. 600 pounds. 1st, 2nd, 3rd in men, women, veteran, schoolboy and a couple of quid to the timekeepers and you were lucky if a win got you 40 pounds – most often much less. It might have bought a new tire!

    Also, you tended to see the same names up there each week. Rarely did anyone “come out of nowhere) to win.




    0
  44. @wiscot

    I find a TT a refreshing break from racing RR’s or crits now. So many times in races I come off the track thinking ‘damn, I could have done that differently and better’, where with a TT you can pace it wrong but really it’s just you and your legs, and your time is likely to be a pretty fair reflection of your strength.

    Without sounding big-headed, I’m going well right now and I knew that I had a good time trial in my legs, and also that my new bike woulc be fast – but even my most optimistic estimates didn’t have me taking nearly a minute out of my PB. I was thinking 21:45. So I’m pretty pleased with that ride. Probably in the form of my life. Can’t complain!




    0
  45. @RobSandy

    @chris

    @RobSandy

    I think a 10 mile TT gets a pass from Rule #24 because of tradition and that.

    Think of it as a 16.14 km TT, if it’d make you happier.

    Thinking of it as a 16.14 km TT is wrong. It’s been a staple of the British club scene since before Napoleon so it’s got to be in miles.

    If you’re some sort of Rule #24 fundamentalist and get offended by Imperial measurements, you could refer to it as a Ten.

    0

    @wiscot

    You want to direct this vitriol at @KogaLover, not me!

    I agree 100% that British TT distances are always miles, regardless of the Rules.

    Glad to have sparked some discussion on contentious issues on this site again, welcome! Must have missed the memo about British TT distances always being in miles. Seems the US influence on this website is waning when the Brits are taking over. Am going to do a charity ride mid June from our London office to our Kent office so will have to get used to riding on the wrong side of the road. I always click out my right foot first (sidecurb being to my right)…

    Should I start a discussion on #29 again? Got a lot of attention back in the days.




    0
  46. @KogaLover

    Glad to have sparked some discussion on contentious issues on this site again, welcome! Must have missed the memo about British TT distances always being in miles. Seems the US influence on this website is waning when the Brits are taking over. Am going to do a charity ride mid June from our London office to our Kent office so will have to get used to riding on the wrong side of the road. I always click out my right foot first (sidecurb being to my right)…

    Should I start a discussion on #29 again? Got a lot of attention back in the days.

    0

    You’ll probably have to get more used to motorists actively trying to murder you if you’re used to European driving attitudes to cycling!

    There is no discussion to be had on Rule #29. You know this.

    You can point out all my rule breaking here though, if you like…




    0
  47. Time Trials are much more of A Thing in Britain than pretty much anywhere else so I reckon they get to write the rules on that.

    I’m always in several minds about them. Yes they are the Race of Truth, all about your own effort… there’s something monkishly pure about turning up to a village hall at stupid o’clock to pin on a number, ride on your own and leave without saying more than a dozen words.

    What I’m less keen on is the obsession with equipment and technology. Spending £1000 to go and have someone tell you if your head is in the right position, or different shoe covers would save you 20 seconds. I just don’t have the time or the inclination to go through all that.

    So this year I’m just doing mainly club TTs and any opens will be with Road Bike categories or on sporting courses where it doesn’t matter so much.




    0
  48. @RobSandy

    @wiscot

    I find a TT a refreshing break from racing RR’s or crits now. So many times in races I come off the track thinking ‘damn, I could have done that differently and better’, where with a TT you can pace it wrong but really it’s just you and your legs, and your time is likely to be a pretty fair reflection of your strength.

    Without sounding big-headed, I’m going well right now and I knew that I had a good time trial in my legs, and also that my new bike woulc be fast – but even my most optimistic estimates didn’t have me taking nearly a minute out of my PB. I was thinking 21:45. So I’m pretty pleased with that ride. Probably in the form of my life. Can’t complain!

    0

    That’s a great feeling when you can just fly! Sadly, I’m in quite the opposite form right now. Like @wiscot, I did my annual monster of a gravel race last weekend. It’s a true ball-buster, my average speed was ~2km/hr slower than last year’s. That just makes the suffering go on a little longer.




    0
  49. @MangoDave

    0

    That’s a great feeling when you can just fly! Sadly, I’m in quite the opposite form right now. Like @wiscot, I did my annual monster of a gravel race last weekend. It’s a true ball-buster, my average speed was ~2km/hr slower than last year’s. That just makes the suffering go on a little longer.

    One of the great truisms of cycling – However good, or bad, you feel right now…it wont last.

    So, rode an hour to a race last night, raced a draining crit for 45 minutes then rode an hour home. This morning I feel as if I’ve been beaten about the legs with hammers, and had to ride 25kms to work into a steady block headwind. I was crawling.




    0

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