I picked up a 2nd hand track bike a few years ago, I did two Hawthorn 'Sunday Roasts', did alright in the endurance events and got smashed in the points events. I rode a few more training sessions with ABOC, then hung the track bike in the shed for 18 months. I've always been going to sell it but never got around to it...
At this time of year we're all waiting for CSV and the Northern Combine to publish their winter road season calendars so we're all in no-mans land training wise... Crits on weekends, a few road TTs, just banging out training kms because we have to.. or was it because we enjoy cycling? For me its a mix of both. The guys at Coburg CC were having their club track champs on a Wednesday night so I thought it'd be an interesting test to dust off the track bike and see how I went over 3000m. It was a low key event so zero pressure (except from those there watching). The result? Not bad. I was quickest on the night for the pursuit with Sam Lilley not far off my time taking out their club title. I'm Hawthorn CC, so don't qualify for the medals.
The 2010 Victorian Masters Track Championships are on March 13/14 - a week and a half after my first pursuit. If I could sort out all the issues I encountered at the Coburg session I might be in for a shot, so I've entered. Just to mix it up and set a benchmark I've entered the 1km TT as well.
Equipment wise the track bike I own wasn't up to scratch, a little weighty, and the wrong BCD so I was stuck with a 48 tooth chain ring. A few emails later I've got a loaner bike from Stuart Vaughan sorting out the frame weight and chain ring problems. Next up - fast wheels. Stuart offered me a pair of quick wheels for the championships, but I needed to get on DISC and set my benchmark times with fast wheels. Two emails and two days later Andy at BikePro had a Zipp disc axle converter and front bolt-on skewer for me. I spent Saturday getting the bike setup sorted. The 200mm head tube on the 57cm loaner frame doesn't allow me to get low enough to be as aero as I'd like, but it's the best I can do with what I've got.
Sunday morning was spent at DISC with the full setup (rear disc, TT helmet, etc). I got a few efforts in which I was happy with. I was on a flyer for four laps before my lungs exploded - 120rpm cadence?! Wrong gearing too. This blowup was exactly what I needed. The next few efforts were pegged a little lower and things were much more comfortable, if I can hold that pace in the event then I'll be happy.
So all systems 'go' for the weekend. Aiming 100% for two state track titles, given the short preparation time frame I'd be happy with two podiums, failing that, I'm sure I'll have fun just giving it a shot. Lots of friendly faces from Hawthorn, Coburg, and other clubs will be there.
Beyond the state championships, the Australian Masters Track Championships are five weeks later at the same location. If all goes well this weekend and if I'll be competitive at M1 national level - it'll be 110% for the national Masters 1 1km and 3km events. If I do target the Nationals, it will mean seeking better bike, better gearing, better aero, more speficic training... So if anyone knows of a 56-57cm track frame, or something with a 12-13cm head tube, I'm open to suggestions... 2nd hand, new, sponsored (I'll even say nice things about it), rent-try-buy... I'll do the hard yards, I just need a super-fast broom stick to fly on! I don't call on people too much but given the short time periods I will now! :)
Keep an eye on my Facey and Twitter for updates... bring on the weekend racing!