Airport Time Trial Race Report

When I can, I like to make a "Trophy Pic" like this for my wall

When I can, I like to make a “Trophy Pic” like this for my wall

Airport TT Race Report: John Tenney
As has been said previously, the Airport TT venue is an excellent place to time trial. In addition to the wide bike lanes, today we had support from the Orlando Police (who left two squad cars at the start line with lights on to slow down traffic) and a representative from GOAA Ops who gave us up to date weather. Great support for this race!

And the weather was definitely an issue. It was raining when I got the course. I waited in the car for 15 minutes for it to stop. When it finally did stop raining it still looked pretty ominous. Fortunately Claudio Mayol (a race volunteer, there every event) convinced me to stay and at least ride the course. So I took a ride up and down Heintzelman and it wasn’t that bad although very windy. The south end of the course looked really ominous – with dark skies and thunder clouds. Still, I got back to the start totally dry. I decided to go on with it, but I elected to do only one lap (Tim was giving us the option of 1 or 2 laps, 7 or 14 miles.)

The 14 milers left first, and then the junior 7 milers. I was the first of the adult 7 milers to start so I expected to be passed early and often. Oddly enough the first guy to catch me did so about a half mile before the turn and he inspired me to try and catch him. I stayed at least 25 yards behind him (and everybody) so no drafting took place, don’t worry. Another guy caught me just after I made the turn and I let him go, and then decided to chase him. Although I never caught him I kept him in sight. No one else caught me the rest of the ride. I was trying to catch Clay Zinnert in front of me but he is improving and although I gained a little I never seemed to get close enough to make a difference. Clay did a 20:31 which is not his best but hey, before this year that would have beaten me every time!

It was difficult to say where the wind was coming from although I was getting knocked around a lot. I’d say it was a crosswind from the east most of the time. When the course takes the little jaunt to the west at the south end I did feel a little push.

There was (for once) no traffic affecting the 180 degree turn. I slowed to 16 or so because the road was damp but got right on the pedals and picked it up again right away. Except for the first climb from under the bridge my analysis shows I did not go below 21 mph on either leg. That is an improvement.

I crossed the line still pushing, although starting to run out of gas. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. I finished in 18:38 which beats my old record by 20 seconds. Average speed over the 6.94 mile course was 22.35 mph, also a new personal record for any time trial.

It started raining shortly after I finished so I headed for the car, loaded up and drove home very excited about a great effort tonight.

14th out of 16 at tonight's Airport TT, but a new personal record of 18:38, average speed of 22.35 mph

14th out of 16 at tonight’s Airport TT, but a new personal record of 18:38, average speed of 22.35 mph

State Championship Time Trial Report

JWT-not-so-hugeState TT race report from John Tenney and Bill Edgbert:
John – Friday
Got to the Palm Beach course a little late, around 6pm. Went out to ride the course, by myself. Bill and Wayne just drove it. Big dinner at Golden Corral with Bill, Lorraine and Wayne. They dropped me off, I drove back to Comfort Inn in Jupiter and slept well.

Up at 6ish, had a nice breakfast at Comfort Inn. Got most of the Full Manny taken care of.

Out to the course, did some warmup. The sun was out and it was getting hot. My start time was 10:20 and they were on time. It was getting windy also. I couldn’t use the ghetto wheel, because it is technically not legal for UCI races so I switched to an 88mm rear wheel. The combination of 88mm on front and back wheels was not very stable. The seat was tipped a little forward too, so my left shoulder got a little sore. I completed the first 10 miles in under 30 minutes (about 29:45) so I felt good and was slightly ahead of schedule. I actually gained a little on Bill, who was one minute ahead of me (He was taking it easy for the first segment). As I turned on to the downwind leg, I was stuck behind a tractor pulling a device that spanned the road. I managed to squeak by but it slowed me a bit. Also, getting some noise from the bottom bracket. I stayed ahead of the 20 mph average until I turned on the downwind leg. I started dropping down to 18, 19 mph. Fortunately, I got a second wind and pushed it up to 24 mph at the end of the Hwy 98 segment. The last segment was slower though, as the road was bumpy, the wind was a factor and my shoulder started hurting more. I slugged through it and finished at 1:12:50 for a 20.3 mph average. I ended up 12th out of 13 Masters 55-59 that finished, HOWEVER, two of those guys missed their start times and did not get penalized. Seems a little unfair to me as I was there waiting for my start time, and not warming up as they probably were. 2 DNS filled out the field of 15.

Had a cool down ride after but I was pretty wiped out. Made my protein shake, jumped in the truck and started heading home, with XFL on my mind.

My state TT race report (inspired by Johns report)

Same as Johns report except for the race. I was estimating finishing the race around 1 hour 5 minutes. Not a very competitive time when compared to what the field would be running but a doable time for me.

I started out easy and kept telling myself “do not start too hard” we have 40K to go. It was a little over 9 miles to the first turn so I kept the pace steady and kept looking for a smooth place to ride on the road. There was no traffic so that was the easy part.

After the first turn I got some help from the wind so I started to crank up the speed. The straight away after the first turn was short that was followed by a left turn another short section then a right turn with a longer section that took us to the return route. I kept the speed up on these shorter sections and raced to each turn.

When I got on the return route, which was a 4 lane highway, the wind was coming in from the right side but not to bad so I settled in to a pace and got ready for the last stretch which was a bumpy road 5 miles long with a head wind.

The last 5 miles were the toughest part of the race. At one point I had my head down and was struggling to keep the power at 100% and my speed was slowing due to the head wind and I asked myself if I was going to make it to the finish line. At that time I lifted my head an saw the finish line just around the corner. With that my cadence started to build and the speed went up. Got close to 100 rpm cadence and shifted to the next gear. I kept building more cadence and shifting to higher gears. I stopped looking at the power and concentrated on the cadence and speed. I turned the last corner and pushed as hard as i could to the finish line. I crossed the finish line around 27 MPH and let off but I could not stop pedaling. I had to slam on the brakes before I got to the corner.

I was totally spent. I rode around a while and then got off the bike and started thinking about the next day. The Cross Florida ride.

My time was 1 hour 5 minutes 26 seconds. I finished at my estimated time. All in all a good race. I have a better understanding of my FTP and can use that to tailor the trainer workouts so I can build the FTP up and get faster for next years 40K State TT. Looking forward to it.

John's map of the course with estimated wind direction

John’s map of the course with estimated wind direction

Cross Florida Ride Report

Thumbs-upJohn Tenney’s report of his first Cross Florida ride:
Sunday April 6th

Up at 4:30, we packed and left the house at 5:15. Got to Alan Shepherd Park in Cocoa Beach around 6 am. Did the usual preparation stuff, said hi to many folks, and made frequent trips to the restroom of course. I was still pretty wiped out from the State Championship 40K Time Trial the day before.

Kathleen ready for a very LONG day

Kathleen ready for a very LONG day

At 7am we rolled out from Cocoa Beach on our way to the other coast. The first hour was fast, riding along at 25mph typically in a large peloton. We covered more than 21 miles even with two bridges to climb (causeway).

About mile 30 to 35 Crockett, Morgan and I dropped off the back of the Eastside group, which had been doing 18-19mph but had started picking it up to 21-22. Somebody was pulling too fast up there. We stayed together for several miles. Morgan eventually started feeling better again and took off to catch up with the pack.

SAG-3Our first stop was at mile 48 and went according to plan. next, we went 23 more miles, but accidentally beat Kathleen to the scheduled stop – a convenient store / gas station that was inconveniently closed for repairs. We only waited about 15 minutes for her and enjoyed the rest. After this we scheduled stops every 10 or 15 miles or so, because it was now getting hot and we were going through our water supplies very fast. This interrupted our “plan” a bit but we were still on schedule to make all the time limits.

KWT-Crockett-101The whole time I was planning on calling it a day at some point and climbing in the truck with Kathleen to finish the ride. I was not expecting to have enough to make it to the end and was surprised when I started feeling better. At mile 127 I told Kathleen “I’m doing this!” and she was quite surprised. Crockett had told me to go on ahead and he would try to catch up. He was experiencing some stomach issues. (He did catch up after all, see below.)

Between mile 125 and mile 154 I got together with Kerry Smith, from Crystal River, who was willing to slow down a bit to ride with me. I was fighting “the bonk”, where my body had run out of easily accessible resources and was down to burning fat. I could only go 14 or 15 miles an hour on level ground, and unfortunately there wasn’t much of that left, as the course was getting rather “hilly.”

At the last stop I made, mile 154, I told Crockett (who was coming in as I was leaving) that I was glad to see him still rolling and would see him at the finish. Little did I know he would beat me to the finish by over an hour.

I skipped the last stop at mile 160 (Kathleen cheered for me as I rode by) and went on ahead to finish the last 7 miles. Somehow I followed a road marking that was two years old and “blacked out” but I still made the turn. There were road markings on this route also, although they looked a little worn. At this point, I was fatigued and just thinking about getting to the finish. I saw “<- XFL Finish!" on the road and turned in to a park. An empty park. Wrong park but I didn't know that. I rode all around the park looking for people. I had beat my goal of 12 hours (11:55) but where was everybody? I waited and waited. Nobody showed up. I rode around the park again. Found one lady who told me that this was not Bayport Park anymore, it's now Linda Jenkins Park and she didn't know exactly where Bayport was but it was "back that way." How I got lost
How I got lost

I almost went further in the wrong direction, but turned back up the road I was on and found a jogger who gave me good directions. I was about 7 miles away, ugh. It was getting dark, I had no lights, and my phone was in the truck on the charger. Not good.

JWT-176Fortunately I got back on the right road and Kathleen found me. I got lights out of my bag and finished the ride. I rode in to see Kathleen, Crockett and my new friend Kerry, waiting for me. It was embarrassing coming in so late (almost 13 1/2 hours) but I figured I had a great story.

We would have been lost without Kathleen.  It was SO vital, so important, that she was waiting for us at the next stop, with a truck full of all the things we needed.  Thank you again my lovely wife, for sacrificing your weekend to help us!

We would have been lost without Kathleen. It was SO vital, so important, that she was waiting for us at the next stop, with a truck full of all the things we needed. Thank you again my lovely wife, for sacrificing your weekend to help us!

Didn’t really want to hang around so we jumped in the truck and headed home. I was dreading the drive home. I thought it would be painful and long. It wasn’t. It was a fun reflection on the days activities as all three of us talked about the events of the day. Yes we were tired but we had done it, we had gotten through our first Cross Florida ride without serious incident.