The course is both fun and hard. There are some good high speed turns, one big hill and a lot of steeper rollers with an overall length of around 11.5 miles. The hill and rollers make it hard to get into a rhythm and you always seem to be changing gears. With that said, I'm not a climber so I lose a little ground in those areas most of the time...so it's a challenging course for me.
I hadn't ridden in two days so my legs were likely fresh, but a little dead due to time off. After about 30 minutes of warming up on the trainer they started to wake up a little...but still were not all the way there, so I didn't quite know what to expect for the race. My best time ever is a 28:42...so I was shooting for something in that range.
I also had a different bike set up than previously...and will make a few more changes. Previously the seat post I had was a reversed Ritchey which worked, but had the nose of the saddle pointed up a little, which makes it a little uncomfortable when in the drops. So, I switched seat posts to another "Throw away" post I had laying around and tried to make it work...which it didn't. So I went back to a zero degree post and a Selle Italia Max Flite saddle that allows for a very far forward positioning of the saddle...which worked OK, but I had the saddle set just a little bit too high as I could feel it in my knees the last 1/2 of the race. I plan on picking up a cheap post that I can reverse and will allow proper set up of the saddle as well as switching back to my original saddle for next weeks race.
Other changes made to my set up was lowering the bars by 1cm and switching from a 95mm to a 110mm stem. Looking at photos from the PIR TT I could see I was a little tall and looked a little compact on the bike...so I made the switch. I'm still not sure it's better or not right now.
I also decided not to go with a full set of TT wheels leaving my disc at home. I instead went with my 58mm, tubular Corsa Concepts for lighter weight and to get some power numbers during the race. I had just got them back from having new tires glued on after my crash at Kings Valley, where I also had to re-true the rear wheel a little, so I wanted some time on them to make sure they were ready for next weeks road race. So I wasn't as aero as I could have been for the race, but still good overall.
The race it's self went well enough. I tried using my power meter to pace myself...but in reality probably should have just ignored it. I think my pacing overall was good though...but I can tell the final hill is my slowest part of the race. I can hit the front side hard because I'm fresh, but coming back up it after a 25 minute hard effort is more difficult. Next week...I need to get out of the saddle and push it more there for a better time.
Overall though I had a good race finishing 2nd in the Masters 40+ (6th fastest time overall) with a time of 28:50, which is good and falls within my average for this race. I can tell there are areas where I can go faster on the course...which I will try to do next week. Something in the range of 28:20 - 28:30 is attainable, I just need a slightly better run at certain sections.
I think a few changes to the bike will help here as well...Some final tuning and it should be set up for a long time...until I can afford to get a new TT bike as my 5 year old aluminum Fuji is behind the times when it comes to being the most aerodynamic design out there.