This weekend was a difficult choice between – Banbury Star 23 mile TT – and Maidenhead 29 mile TT. Banbury Star has Sunrising hill, but I chose Maidenhead because it is my local training roads, and I can just about manage to cycle there. Given that it is Mother’s Day, I think a third option might have been to head north and explain my delayed Mother’s Day Card, but it was too late, and I stuck with racing down south.
From Oxford to Frieth ‘as the crow flies’ is 21 miles – given that the weather was -1 degrees on waking up, it was a close decision to cycle rather than drive. But, I’m glad I chose to cycle in the end, it wasn’t quite as cold as I feared and it was a good way to stack up some miles. 90 in total, which is the furthest distance this year.
The Maidenhead and District CC 29 Mile TT goes from Frieth to Stokenchurch, Christmas Common, Henley, Marlow to Frieth. It is not particularly hilly, more a few long drags, 370m of climbing over 29 miles. There was quite a variety of entrants, with a few hardy souls tackling the course on tricycles, there were also a few 2-up teams, including a two teams from Gregarios CC.
It is good to do a few local time trials, and at this time of the season, it feels a relaxed way to ease yourself into racing. 21 miles to the start took longer than expected, and I arrived in the nick of time, with just enough time to fix number and head off to the start.
There was a cold northerly wind which made the first climb to Stokenchurch tough. There was even a brief flurry of snow, which had me trying to remember last nights weather forecast, but fortunately, it didn’t last too long. Along the course, there was more traffic than usual and I got slowed down behind cars, quite a few times. Perhaps there were more cars on the road as everyone was heading off for Sunday lunch with their Mother. I guess I shouldn’t complain.
At one left turn there was a queue of four cars waiting to turn right, and I thought I would go on the inside as there was plenty of space, but the last car drove up to the pavement to prevent me. But, not wanting to queue for 60 + seconds I got off bike and walked along the pavement for 2 yards and re-mounted. Good job it wasn’t a hill climb where you are not allowed to cover the course on foot. After that, I flew down the long hill to Henley and finished quite strongly on the last climb from Marlow to Frieth.
I finished in a time of 1.08.32 (av 26.0mph) which was quite a good time for the conditions. Danny Axford (Arctic Shorter) another local rider finished one second faster in 1.08.31. All that relaxed build up, and it was one of the closest races of the season!
Any rider can always think of 50 reasons why they could have gone 1 second quicker. I won’t use the excuse of holdups, but concentrate on my Trek draftbox opening up on the bumpy roads and then flapping about for half the ride; it was a bit annoying because a multitool in a Sainsburys bag fell out.
After the race, I covered half the course looking for a fallen multi-tool, all the traffic had seemed to disappear, but I couldn’t find the multi-tool and, with the weather turning to hail, I didn’t fancy completing another lap so headed straight home. Overall, I quite enjoyed the mornings ride, despite losing a multitool and being one second the wrong side of first place.
Thanks to Maidenhead and District CC for standing in the cold at the corners and putting on the race. I’m not racing next weekend, but after that it is first round of RTTC Time Trial series.
Stats of ride
- 29 miles
- power: 280 watts. (288NP
- temp 34 degrees F
- Cadence: 94
- Max S 46.8mph
|1||Danny Axford||Arctic Tacx RT||01:08:31|
|2||Tejvan Pettinger||Sri Chinmoy Cycling Team||01:08:32|
|3||Pat Wright||Paceline RT||01:09:08|
|4||Peter Harrison||G.S. Henley||01:10:36|
|5||Ryan Davies||G.S. Henley||01:12:56|
|6||Stuart Auckland||Team Bottrill||01:13:05|
|7||Richard Gildea||Didcot Phoenix CC||01:13:20|
|8||Rob Walker [E]||High Wycombe CC||01:13:40|
|9||Simon Barbour||G.S. Henley||01:14:04|
|10||Piran Tedbury||MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS CC||01:16:53|
|11||Martin Stanley||Didcot Phoenix CC||01:16:56|
|12||Matthew McKibbin||Royal Navy & Royal Marines CA||01:17:02|
|13=||Joe Francis||Maidenhead & District CC||01:17:38|
|13=||Andrew Payne||Maidenhead & District CC||01:17:38|
|15||Ben Nichol||High Wycombe CC||01:17:44|
|16||Roderick Macfadyen||Reading CC||01:20:44|
|17||Brett Ansley||Maidenhead & District CC||01:22:37|
|18||Matthew Blagg||Maidenhead & District CC||01:25:53|
|19||Ross McArthur||Gregarios Superclub Ciclista||01:26:27|
|20||Michael Henley||Maidenhead & District CC||01:27:26|
|21||Ria Woodfield [W]||Kingston Wheelers CC||01:31:02|
|22||Bernard Phillips||Maidenhead & District CC||01:36:48|
|23||Nicholas Bland||Twickenham CC||01:39:50|
|24||Pippa O’Brien [W]||700cc||01:51:04|
|25||John Bush||Maidenhead & District CC||01:51:25|
|26||Russell Cole Smith||Thames Velo||01:54:12|
Previous results in Maidenhead & District CC