Though not technically an official event, I feel that the suffering experienced during my first bike TT warranted a short post. Surely something that leaves you feeling, as Roz delicately puts it, unsure of whether you wanted to, “shit, puke, or orgasm at the end” is worthy of a mention.
The Aberdeen Wheelers host a range of different events, time trials being just one. They range in length and in elevation, so I was more than happy to choose a flat, short circuit for my TT debut. Roz and Ny had both done it before, and the idea of just gunning it for half an hour appealed. Both of them were hoping to dip under 30 minutes for the first time, and my aim, essentially, was to avoid embarrassing myself.
Ny picked me up and we drove out to Drumoak, where Roz was waiting, nice and early. We parked up, then cycled back to the layby to give our names, get numbers pinned on, and chat to the guys who were already there before a quick warm-up to Drum castle car park and back.
As the start time grew nearer, my nerves started to show, but a very enthusiastic offer to assist me with push-off distracted me in my final moments of rest.
As soon as I heard go, I was off (to a ripple of cheers from everyone else). Within seconds I was rapist-breathing, and immediately regretted leaving my water in the car. Oh well, half an hour or so to go!
Going first, I had nobody to chase, but thankfully Ny had pointed out the route at the weekend so I had a rough idea of where I was going (and it was clearly sign-posted). Even this did not calm my nerves after the turnoff, and second left turn onto the road back as I was fully expecting to be overtaken by the faster riders. I was starting to wonder if I’d somehow gone wrong, and I was thrashing myself to go as fast as I could in the wrong direction.
Just as I was about to start checking behind me for signs of life, however, the first of two riders to overtake me came flying past on my right, and I put my head down and pushed on into a headwind until I saw the sign up ahead that signaled the end was nigh! I picked it up a bit (at least I did in my mind) and crossed the finish line thoroughly spent, pedaling slowly to a point where I could turn around and head back to the drive for a seat on the ground.
Once all of the riders had finished, the two organisers walked up with the results. With an average speed of 19.6mph (and an average HR of 182bpm), I’d managed to finish my first 10 mile TT in 30:33, behind Roz, who frustratingly crossed the line in 30:11, and Ny, who totally won in a time of 29:49, which likely explains the smile on her face: