Thursday, August 16, 2007

TOP Truxell TT-Solo 08/16/07

Goals-my goal tonight was to set fastest time of day if at all possible on a 2-man TT night. But I was solo because Thom my partner from last race bowed out. So I got myself psyched up all day for a solo effort. I also wanted to nail a 19 minute run by myself as well. The course record is 19:08 set in 1997 by my friend Rudy Sroka. Last race Thom and I went 19:29 losing to Ed Delgros and Janie (sp?)on a tandem by 4 seconds.

All day I watched the weather and waited for the NW 10 mph winds to move to the south, but it never did. Also, it was still humid so there was the double H whammy-headwind and humidity. But I still thought maybe a 19 minute run and maybe ftd, though there were some fast guys and woman in pairs tonight.

On the warm-up I didnt feel the course was so fast on Akron Peninsula road so I had planned to run it as fast as I could while still saving some for Truxell where I planned on just turning the hurt index to high and leaving it there. Also, again I planned on racing on speed and Perceived exertion, not Wattage. I didnt cover my power tap, but I didnt watch it (most of the time) either.

Having done the course once before and pre-riding 6 miles of it today I set aside landmarks all the way down A/P road. Go hard here, conserve here, maintain speed here, let speed drop here.

The start was as practiced and I settled into a good pace and HR was good. At my first marker I cranked it up and got up over 30mph so I started to think maybe a 19 minute run was possible. As the ups and downs went by my legs felt quite good even though I was in quite a bit of pain as usual.

The turn on Truxell came and I went through it fast not wanting to lose momentum on the false flat of about a mile till the first real uphill. Again, speed was better than expected at 26 to 25mph. The first hill came and I shifted several times and when speed dropped to less than 23mph I finally popped up off the clip-ons and started to pump away. This went on and on up and over the winding road.

As is my style I didnt take breaks on the backsides of the rolling uphill and just pressed on. I was catching a few pairs of riders so that helped keep the motivation up. Also once on Truxell I turned my computer off Heart rate and went to distance. At about the 7 mile mark I really started to try and pour it on, but to be honest I was pretty well pinned. Then I switched to time and watched the seconds hit 5, 6, 7 and up. I looked up over the roller and didnt see the finish and said, well there goes the course record. As I pushed over another roller I saw 30, 31, 32 tick by and started to think, maybe I can make this a 19 minute run, but wheres the damn finish?

I was really pushing for everything I had now and as I watched the finish line approaching and time counting up 57, 58, 59-DRAT!! NO 19 minute run, but hey, I figured not the best conditions right and I thought it was still a fast run for the night.....

So I sprint across the line after having gotten out of the saddle several times, legs and lungs protesting from jumping repeatedly out of the saddle in the last 0.5 mile to nail that 19minute run and I look down at my PowerTap and I see 19:0 somethng flash by as I hit some buttons to stop the interval. WHAT?? I couldnt believe what my eyes saw for that split second. I rolled down the road hoping it was true and after awhile I rode back to the Tom the official and he says 19:05 which breaks Rudy's record set in 1997. Somehow in my delerium of pain I didnt pay any attention to the minutes.

I waited till I was all alone riding down Truxell then started yelling and hooting with joy!! For the first time this year and in my cycling career I have a record that is all mine!! Not a first in class, but 5th overall or a 2nd spot by one second, but a course record!! Rudy, his son and I talked a long time on the ride back to the cars and he was genuinly happy for me and I a bit not knowing what to say. But his being happy for me made it even better. I respect Rudy as I am sure everyone else does too.

And as an odd ritual on the way back I stopped and climbed Quick road. I wanted a few more miles and also to see this climb...Weird, I know. Didnt hurt at all...

This has been such a great last few weeks of racing. I am definatelty going out tomorrow night to celebrate (as I drink a tasty beer as I type). I think I deserve a big fat desert and maybe something really decadent and tasty.


Rick said...

Fantastic, Ray! Nice, nice job.

Ray Huang said...

Rick, thanks so much. I pushed and pushed and though I felt my speed was good all the way-I still never thought tonights the night.