My first time trial

Last night I took part in my first time trial.

Due to a combination of fellow blogger Carrie, telling me I should give a cycling club a go and my triathlete colleague suggesting I should join a club so I can enter certain events, I contacted my local cycling club, the Eastbourne Rovers.

I emailed them on Wednesday night and got a reply back Thursday morning. They informed me that they had a time trial on Thursday evenings and I was welcome to come along, have a chat and take part if I wanted. Feeling a little nervous, I had a good look on their website, taking particular note about their time trials. Having brought up the most recent time trial results, I noticed my triathlete colleague and his wife were listed with their times. At this point, I thought I'd better go and ask him for some advice.

I told him that I'd been invited along to the time trial and he told me what to expect and gave me all the details I needed.

I obviously hadn't planned to take part in a time trial and had ridden to work. I was unsure as to whether or not I should ride home or get the train. That way I could be fresher for the time trial which I had to be there at 6.30pm. I decided to ride home in the end, opting to take it easy. However, because of the heat, and me being a bit sweaty, my groin was starting to get a little sore in the saddle.

As I was running short of time, I put the bike in the car and headed to the meeting point. Once I got there, I asked someone where I sign up and got the odd strange look as I was pushing my mountain bike and not wearing lycra. As I got to the sign-up point, I met my colleague and he helped me sign up, by explaining that I should go first. I paid my £3 and got my number.

I warmed up and rode to the start line. On the start line, a bloke was there to hold the bike steady so I could clip-in and be ready to go. I waited for the countdown and off I went. I'd been told I needed to push myself and give it all I have. The course is 10 miles with one proper hill and a roundabout at the halfway point. I started off fast holding 20mph for half a mile. My speed started to slow down as I realised how hard it was to maintain a decent speed. I levelled out at about 16.5mph and was going well. No one had over taken me yet. As riders were released at one minute intervals, I was dreading people over taking me early on. The first bike overtook me after 3.2 miles. He had a number 3 so had been realised 2 minutes after me. I thought it would have been my colleagues wife who was starting one minute after me.

I know the road course well as I used to drive it every day on my commute and was dreading the hill coming up. Just before the hill, it goes slightly down hill, so my speed went back up to 20mph. As I hit the hill though, my energy just died. I was struggling but determined. I got to the top and continued down towards the roundabout. At the half way mark, my colleague, nor his wife had overtaken me, although several others had. At 5.85 miles his wife overtook me and gave me words of encouragement. I continued up the hill where my chain was playing silly buggers and I had to get off briefly to check it. Back on the bike I went down the hill, hitting 30.2mph.

At the 7.5 mile mark my colleague went past and shouted "Come on Toby". I really was running on empty but the last couple of miles are pretty flat. My speed was staying about the 15 mph mark and the saddle soreness was getting to me. I pushed and pushed and pushed. I did it!

I completed the course in 39m17s with an average time of 15.27mph. I was hoping for a 40 minute time so was happy with that. I rode slowly back to the meeting point to chat with my colleague and some of the others. Many of the other riders asked how I got on and were encouraging.

I've now completed my first cycling time trial. Something I never thought I'd ever do. Would I do it again? Of course. I wan't to get better and faster. I'm really feeling it today though so no riding.

Official results here.


  1. OMG! That's spanking!! Well done

  2. Bloody hell, that is giving it big licks on a mountain bike!
    Really well done to you :)

  3. I think the phrase ryhmes with "clucking bell", you're on fire at the minute mate!

    Chuffed to bollocks for you! :-)

  4. Cheers guys, as always.

    I'm trying to find what works for me and get better and more powerful at the pedalling. Hopefully this club can give me that. Most of what they do until the end of the summer is road racing but come the autumn, the variety of riding should suit me better.

  5. Just back on the scene again Toby and ive read a little of your blog but need to catch up on all the blogs here


  6. Toby that it absolutely brill I thought last week the L to B was awesome but mate u keep pulling out all the stops big up to u mate

    JB look out Toby is after u

  7. Whoah, you fast b*stard! Brilliant!

  8. Mate I'm in awe of your courage - fair play to ya! I've been dreaming of doing such a thing for over a year... Seriously fair play to ya! Keep er lit!

  9. Cheers Simon, Les and Phill.

    Peter - There's nothing stopping you. You're only racing yourself.

  10. Well done mate - thats some good going!

    I've still not got the balls to enter a TT.

  11. Takes huge guts to go and do what you've just know what I mean. I've not done a 10 this year myself yet! The most exciting thing is watching your times drop every time you race.

  12. one of these days I will have another go at time trialling - the problem is finding time when you have a family to cart round places. might even dig out my racing bike!
    Just think how speedy you would be on a lightweight drop handlebar bike!
    You are doing very well, I have been peeking in occaisionally, I hope you don't mind!

  13. Thanks Sue. I'm hoping to do another one soon but will wait for the pain in my ribs to go down. I'm getting faster all the time on my MTB and am starting to find hills easier. I hope to progress to a road bike, but to be honest, I'm in no hurry, even if I do look a little out of place.


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