Time Trialing (Part 4 of 4 – Aaron Buggle)
In this four part blog series I have only skimmed the surface but I have given you the lowest hanging fruit in terms of the biggest and quickest improvements. There is a lot more to time trialing than we have covered here, such as equipment choices, advanced positioning and other topics. What we have gone through this series is the essential information you’ll need to perform well in TT’s. The time trial can be a very rewarding discipline when you prepare and pull off a performance, improvements can be seen and measured so easily, and your hard work will directly impact your results, which sometimes is often not the case with road racing. Your performance in time trials is almost entirely under your control, with a lot less variables in play compared to road racing and a lot these variables are controllable. A personal best in a time trial is an extremely rewarding feeling, so the winner isn’t the only one going home happy, as is so often the case in road racing.
Open to All
Reading about equipment, many people may think that time trialing is an expensive pursuit reserved for those who are seriously invested in the sport. However this is not the case. Many clubs around the country will run time trials once a week, and many competitors turn up on standard road bikes with no aero equipment. Also these midweek time trials are offering non-aero or “ Eddie Merckx style” categories, to level the playing field as such. All levels of rider can enjoy time trialing, whether it is competing for the win, trying to achieve a personal best, or just trying to beat their friends, it is a very inclusive discipline, all you need is a bike, and the ability to ride the distance of the course.
It is easy to romanticise the time trial, one rider solo, battling against the clock, but make no mistake, time trials will be some of the hardest efforts you ever complete on the bike. The added motivation of a stopwatch, and other competitors really help you to dig deep to try and squeeze every bit of speed from your machine before crossing the line. Following a time trial you will inevitably identify areas where you could have gained seconds, whether it is from going around the roundabouts quicker, or going harder on a headwind section, it is rare that you finish a TT without having made some mistakes. However on those rare occasions where you really empty the tank, rode the course to the best of your ability, and reaped the benefits of all those hours spent training, the feeling of satisfaction is immense and very rewarding.
Time trials are an excellent event for any cyclist to compete in, regardless of their fitness, experience, or budget. Hopefully this blog series proved helpful and informative, and sparked some interest in better preparing yourself for the race against the clock. If you have any more in-depth questions about the world of time trialing please give us a shout!
See you at the start gate!