VTTA 10 mile Winter TT league - Event 2 16/1/24

If I was a little disappointed at the outcome of my first effort at Zwift time trial racing last week, I did at least pace myself a bit better than I did in event #2. This was held on the same course as event #1, the pan-flat Tempus Fugit course. After a short delay occasioned by an unexpected Zwift update on the Apple TV, I set out to spin through a warm-up ride.

I’ve had a fairly heavy training load over the last week, so maybe I was left a bit jaded. However, the principal failing this evening was a that I didn’t keep a consistent power level through the event. Starting too hard was just the start. I lacked any kind of serious motivation, and repeatedly felt like I just wanted to stop. In fact there’s a surprising number of pauses in the record of the ride (see below).

But motivation and strategy weren’t the only reasons for my poorer perfromance in the event (even though I’d say that were the most important.

The bike I have on the Tacx Neo trainer is my old steel time trial bike. It’s been there since I bought the Neo in 2016, and it is slowly but steadily changing from steel to iron oxide. As part of the ongoing corrosion issue, I occasionally have gear problems, either due to corrosion in the gear mechs or of the gear cables where they pass through cable guides on the frame. So here’s the excuse: I couldn’t reliably get the gear I wanted - in fact in the last few minutes waiting for the start, I jumped off the bike to try and ‘persuade’ it to sit in the desired gear!

I always say that pinning a number on your back always lifts your game in a time trial. But I find it a bit difficult to get in the mood when it’s a virtual time trial.

One aspect that is the same as with a real life time trial is watching the elapsed time tick by (seemingly increasingly fast!) as you approach the finish line…

I went 4 seconds faster than last week, with a marginally higher average power. I really need to work on pacing in virtual time trials.

Screenshot 2024 01 17 at 05.45.45

Postscript: It's seems like yesterday was Peak Zwift, when there's an uptick in Zwift rides. It usually coincides with the second or third Tuesday in January. See more at DCRainmaker. The peak hours are usually between 6 and 9pm (European time zones). There did seem to be a shed-load of riders on Zwift before and after the VTTA event!

I went 4 seconds faster than last week, with a marginally higher average power. I really need to work on pacing in virtual time trials.

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Tuesday, 05 March 2024

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