OUCH! That hurt…

After watching the Amgen Tour of California Prologue, I was inspired yesterday to go play on my TT bike, especially since I was really disappointed with my performance at the Alsatian TT. So I went to bed at a reasonable time, got up early, but not too early, and headed out to Texas Motor Speedway for some 40K simulation.

The day was windy, but I used the opportunity to calibrate my final Ergomo with the Ptap, and once I got that dialed in (I also tried out another saddle, which I’m now convinced won’t leave me numb), I replaced the Aeolus 6.5 with an Aeolus disc, and threw my trusty Nimble trispoke on the front.

The goal was to hit roughly 12 minute laps, maybe a little quicker over 5 laps, so I could try and break an hour. So it was a threshold workout, but it was also a great way to test my aero equipment, seat position, and stamina.

Well, the wind wouldn’t quit. It was out of the North, and what was supposed to be an 8kt wind ended up feeling like 15 or more, especially from miles 1-2 when you turned straight in to it, UPHILL. I could feel the front wheel whipping around a bit, but I was convinced that I could control it, especially since it’s supposed to be a better wheel in gusty conditions than the standard HED3’s that everyone uses.

Well, on Lap 3, I was getting to the top of the hill, when a monster gust of wind (must’ve been 25kts, because I abruptly slowed to <15mph) literally hit me from the 1 o’clock position, stalled my front wheel, and literally picked up my rear wheel and flung my bike and myself about 5′ in to the next lane. WHOOSH. I could see that this wasn’t going to end well, but I sort of pulled my left leg up, and landed on my right butt cheek, then the helmet, before I skidded to a stop.


Quick body check, though. Nothing really seemed to be broken. No collarbone (whew), no hip (double whew). I checked the helmet, and thank God for a strong shell – it was just scraped up. Then I checked where my butt’s strawberry would be, and touched skin.

DAMMIT!!!! My Windstopper bib! Shredded! Then I noticed a hole on the front, where my right knee must’ve smacked something on the frame. Another hole. DOUBLE DAMMIT! Blood? Who cares? This clothing is expensive!

Well, I got back on my bike, finished the last two laps, and headed home. I downloaded the information after showering, and then started to analyze the data.

… Whoa.

Let’s see what just happened.
In August of 2007 (I can’t believe it’s been that long since I went out to do this), I blew basic 12-minute laps at roughly 221w. Today, I did them at roughly 230w. Now, you’d think that that was worse, but actually, here’s the difference. It was the atmosphere. Average temperature today was 50 degrees, while in August of ’07, it was 77 degrees. The air was thicker today, the wind stronger and gustier, and yet it cost me about 9 watts and about 10KiloJoules. I’m hoping that maybe, just maybe, as the weather warms up, and hopefully some of the winds die down, that 230 will turn in to a 220 or maybe less. I know I can hold 250 for 60 minutes, so hopefully, this will translate in to a faster 40k come summer.

So maybe it’s not all bad. Still, I’ll be sore tomorrow. My butt still hurts. Dammit!


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