After a little non-clarity from CSV round #5 of the Masters Time Trial series, the state championship round, would count towards the overall series (best 3 times to decide overall winner of each grade). Starting times were grouped into age based medal categories so there was a change of conditions changing (wind/rain) between riders across their series grades. I was again off last and was hoping for a massive wind change in my favor - that didn't happen! :)
John Cain (TFM-Celtic Décor) had started exactly 27mins before I did and he was still up the road when I was heading out - so I knew the course was high 27's low 28's (thanks John!)
Three M1 riders to chase up the road. 1 minute man caught before the Temineck Gap Rd intersection, 2 minute man caught just before the return through Temineck Gap Rd, and my 3 minute man was in sight up the road. The course profile is undulating upwards for the first half - helped with a 15-20km/h tail wind. The return leg was a struggle into the wind, but nowhere near as bad as the 40km/h+ headwinds we had at Newstead for round #4. The rolling terrain and not-quite-block-headwind on the return leg took its toll, it was a struggle to hold good form in the TT position. It was a mini-battle with keeping the bike tracked in a straight line. I could see my 3 minute man around 60 seconds or so up the road take the final turn - job done, almost - I still had to get to the line. 2kms of almost-horizontal riding to cross the line with 27:51, enough to claim the state TT title for Masters 1! Back to back state TT titles!
It has been a long season of TTing and that ride really felt the worst by not being able to lock into a good rhythm on the return leg. Peter Dennis (aka, P. Diddy), an M3 who had put 40 seconds into me at the state Open champs two weeks ago took out time of the day - by a whole 0.74 seconds (remembering these events are hand timed!). We were the only two riders to come in under 28mins on the day so that should ensure I have the win secured for the series. We're still waiting on the results, (presentations?), etc from CSV.
After too many TTs to count, few thanks and tips....
Wangaratta Cycling Club - For the best TT start ramp around, and running the events, superb! Lets rip up Mt Buffafo or Buckland Gap Rd next year? Some good hills will sort out the field!
Castlemaine Cycling Club - For running round #4. Careful who's photos are used on your club newsletter, and never attribute them incorrectly to another commercial entity!
CSV - For getting the series up and running, it give us something to train for, and a reason to get out of the city. I hope things are bigger and better next year - and we're all on the same page with how things will be scored from day 1.
Kosdown - Big thanks to the team sponsor for their support. Especially when its taken over 2,500kms of driving to complete 100km of ITTs. If only Subaru would be as generous as Kosdown!
The 'A' competition - John Cain (CCCC), Matt Chessum (CCCC), Steve Young (Geelong), Micheal Day (CCCC), Martin Lama (BBN) - and anyone else I missed. You guys have kept me very honest throughout the series - I wasn't able to drop my guard at any point or I'd have been rolled by any of you! You're all still on my hit-list for any future TT. :)
Stu Vaughan (HCC) - Stu, you get your very own mention. A few years back we competed in a Northern Combine ITT out at Balliang and we were about 1min off the pace of the winner. Over a coffee after the race we sat and questioned what we needed to do to get faster. Your enthusiasm and positive attitude to keep searching for improvements in performance was contagious. Last year at the state ITT champs you beat me by a whole two seconds in the quest for fastest time of the day, we were all smashed by John Cain, but your 2 seconds was another goal for me to match, and improve on! Fast forward to round #1 of the ITT series - the trash talk was on from the get-go! I was out to claim that two seconds back - and then some, and then some more! You were out to stick more than 2 seconds into me again. In the spirit of our friendly competition I flipped you the bird when you passed me while we were TTing round #1 - along with a huge smile. This inappropriate gesture was the followed up for rounds 2 through 4. It became my personal mind-game out on the road... "where is Stu? I'm gunna flip him a double finger if its not windy!". I was never sure if you saw it, but I know you did... and I know it threw you off your rhythm! Job done! heheheh
and most of all...
Von - For getting dragged along to each event and helping out with the bike, food (pre race and post!), and having to put up with me living like a 'pro' cyclist when I'm not!