INTR Tri Talybont Time Trial

The triathlon club that I’m a member of organise several training events each week, one of them being an occasional, informal time trial around the Borth Loop. I decided to join in with this last night.

It was the first time I’d done it and it is very informal. There were only five of us, Alison, Karen, Pete, Graham and myself and no official timer so we simply time ourselves. The route is one I’m familiar with and is known locally as the Borth Loop. I ride it quite often from home as it goes right past the end of our road, but I’ve therefore only ever started it from home. The club meet in Talybont and that’s where we start from. So, although the route was familiar it was going to be a different start and finish point for me which could make all the difference.

The route starts from Talybont, goes south to Bow Street where we turn right into Llandre, follow the road through to Borth, turn right along the seafront to Ynyslas, past our road and then continue along the road across to bog and into Tre-Ddol. From there it’s a climb up through Taliesin and into Talybont and a quick finish down the hill into the middle of Talybont. A distance of just over 13 miles with a couple of little hills.

Here’s the route and timing, Heart Rate etc. from Garmin Connect… Lap 2 was the time trial, lap 1 was an easy ride there and lap 3 an easy ride home.

My previous best time starting at Ynyslas was 39:07 and recent attempts have all been over 40 minutes. With this in mind, Alison set off first, followed by Karen (who had done a 43 minute time previously) 5 minutes later. I set off around 4 minutes behind Karen and then behind me by 1 minute was Pete and then Graham who did it in 35:01 last time.

I started off quick and felt as though I was going well. The conditions were perfect, clear skies, not too hot and with just a little bit of a SW wind that would help us along the seafront and across the bog where the course is most exposed. There was no traffic for me coming into the right hand turn at Bow Street so I took it quite fast and nearly lost it on the loose gravel, but stayed upright. As I came into Borth I saw Karen ahead of me so pushed hard through the village where I overtook her. I kept pushing along the Golf course and then caught Alison on the little rise in Ynyslas. I knew that Pete and Graham would be chasing me down and thought that they might see me on the long straights across the bog. My average speed was up around 23.5mph at this stage though which sounded good to me, so maybe they weren’t catching me anyway.

I had a good clear run at the next right hand turn as well and was soon climbing strongly up towards Bow Street with no sign of anyone behind me. A quick look at the time and it looked as though I was on for a time somewhere around 35 minutes –  an excellent time for me and only a few seconds over that of Grahams last time out. I eased up a little over the brow of the hill and really should have kept pushing, but soon crossed the line in a time of 35:10, beating my PB for the course (albeit with a different starting point) by almost 4 minutes.

Pete was next home having posted a time somewhere around 35:30 – He hadn’t been catching me after all. Karen was next in with a new PB in the 40 minute zone and Graham was in immediately after, also with a new PB of 34:37. I’m not sure what Alison’s final time was (she wouldn’t say) but she rolled in soon after Graham.

A nice ride, a new PB for me by a long way so I’m happy with that and smiles all round. It is surprising how much faster you go when you know you have someone chasing you down.

According to my Heart Rate I was trying pretty hard as it went straight up to 160bpm at the start and then gradually increased throughout, peaking at 173 towards the end.

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Alan Cole

Alan is a Freelance Website Designer, Sports & Exercise Science Lab Technician and full time Dad & husband with far too many hobbies: Triathlete, Swimming, Cycling, Running, MTBing, Surfing, Windsurfing, SUPing, Gardening, Photography.... The list goes on.

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