I decided to ride this event in the Merckx Category on my Wabi Fixed Gear Bike. I have quite a thing for 70’s style time trialling and before my stroke my big goal was to beat the hour for 25 miles 70’s style (not going to happen now). My 4 previous attempts at this course on the Wabi were all less than 30 minutes but back then I was pushing out over 300W. My goals for this event were rather more humble and I just wanted not to finish last. I reckon I would have to beat my time from earlier in the year to not be last (geared bike with Hed 3 wheels and Kask aero helmet where I managed a 31m46s). Last year by coincidence the last place time was 31m46s. In order to beat this time I would need to see quite a fitness gain as this setup was probably around 30W more efficient.
My Best Times on Wabi:
|Date||Distance||Strava Time||Speed||Pulse||Race Time|
- Note: This was my third TT of the day
I think I am fitter now than I was 3 months ago and my FTP is slightly better but I am not feeling too great. I have been seeing some encouraging results on my Del Valle practice TT course despite the general feeling of malaise. I have been getting within a minute of my previous Wabi times on this course and my times are quite consistent.
My only changes to the Wabi was the addition of a new back tire (after the original Corsa let go in a big way) and a power pod power meter. I also decided to stick with the 48 x 15 gearing which really is a compromise but I don’t think I could push anything bigger on the mainly up hill way out.
The Red Kite people have always been quite liberal with the Merckx rules and some people have some pretty aero kit. I am riding a classic steel tubed bike with no gears and absolutely no aero stuff. I feel I am more than meeting the spirit of the regulation. This article “article here” claims that the difference beween a TT bike and a road bike is around 70W at 25MPH. I would say that for me on this 11.1 mile course it is about 2 minutes difference. The difference between the Wabi Fixed and something like a Venge is harder to guess. I would guess that it could be a minute. This test has some shocking differences and shows that an aero road bike can save around 30W. I think my geared bike with aero wheels and helmet was a good bit faster than the Wabi but I am hoping my fitness has improved.
What was quite significant from the aero testing was the “aero hoods” position which is the virtual aerobar position you see quite often with breakaway riders. With my current state of balance I cant consider doing this as I consider it too dangerous. It would probably get me quite a saving on those long drags on the way out if I could do it. According to this test it was worth 40W on the slowest bike which was huge. When my wife does this on training rides I can notice a big difference.
|Bike model||Aero watts at 45kph||Aero ranking|
|Trek Madone Race Shop Ltd||301.6||299.1||279.1||1st|
|Specialized S-Works Venge ViAS||301.6||300.1||286.1||2nd|
|Canyon Aeroad CF SLX||307.6||295.2||281.5||3rd|
|Giant Propel Advanced SL||343.0||332.6||298.0||5th|
- Strava Segment
- Position 6th
- Time 30m29s (winners time 26m35s)
- Max Speed : 31.1 MPH
- Max Cadence : 130 RPM
- Average Pulse : 171