Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Law Wheelers 25

Jez and I rode the Law Wheelers 25 TT based on the Kippen flats near Stirling on Sunday. Jez made the journey down from Islay to enter his first 25 in just as many years. A quarter of a century ago he just missed going under the hour, not bad for someone on a trike!

The day was overcast with intermittent showers and a decent wind blowing from the East but the weather wasn't bad enough to restrict the times. The course was an emergency fall-back because of roadworks on the Blairdrummond circuit. Starting at the M9 motorway bridge and heading West to the dead-turn at Buchlyvie, the route is pan flat until just before Amprior where the road gets a bit lumpy with a long drag and 2 or 3 bumps

I was off 5th person and was planning a 58. I started steadily and gradually picked up speed but kept well within myself, hoping to save a bit of energy for the ride back. I arrived at the turn in 29 minutes with the intention of hammering home. Everything was going well until the Kippen Flats where I'd decided to up my pace. Rather than going faster my speed started to drop, however much I tried I couldn't get above 23mph. By the time I crossed the finishing line the hour had ticked by, and I was well into my 61st minute, final result was a disappointing 1.01.25.

Jez was on the mainland with his fixed wheel cyclo-cross bike. The night before the race, he converted it into something closer to a TT bike, attaching tri-bars, smooth 28mm tyres and swapping over to his 'larger' sprocket producing a spin-tastic 63" gear!

Using a 'Preying Mantis' style position, Jez found the outward leg tougher than the return and was overtaken a few times but said "The fixed really came into its own on the hills, testers who had passed me on the flats slowed up and I started catching them back up on the lumps before the turn" Jez got to Buchlyvie in an incredible 35 minutes! He has just completed the London to Paris ride on a fixed and not touched a geared bike all year ,so was used to riding at a high cadence. He crossed the finish line in a stunning 1.09.38, which meant he was peddling at 115 revs for over an hour. an incredible effort!

The race was won by Graeme Cockburn of the Glasgow Nightingale in a time of 54.52, with the Mid-Scotland championships won by the Royal Albert's Keith Anderson in 58.24.

Law wheelers organised another grand event, many thanks to the organiser George McLaughlan and all the helpers from the club.

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