It's been a long time since I did the Charlotte Motor Speedway Time Trial. You have to go way back to 2011. Back when I was a newbie really. I've always wanted to make it back up here but, I don't know, just never seemed to work out. Obviously wasn't a priority.
So this year I made it one. I did the Rock Hill Time Trial back in April, and that got me wanting to come up to CMS. They are usually on Wednesday nights, but for some reason (unkown to me) this one was on a Thursday. I decided to just put it in my training schedule, and not alter anything else.
|Easy Thursday Morning Run|
I left straight from work, since I work north of downtown anyways. Little bit of traffic getting to 85, but wasn't bad after that. I stopped at the Subway there in front of the Great Wolf Lodge and grabbed a footlong. Then I drove to the speedway. You have to go all the way around the back to go through the tunnel under the track. I just followed some people in front of me.
As I was walking back I saw Paul, and he said to setup with them. I changed into my trisuit, grabbed my stuff and walked over to their area in the garage. Paul was getting the tandem ready to ride with Chester. Other EPT racers Christa and Shannon were there as well.
I pumped my tires up and got ready to do a warmup. By this time, they had already started people on the track, so it was closed. I rode on the warmup track inside the main track. That's when I first noticed the wind. There was a really good headwind as you went in the direction of the front stretch of the track.
I started putting my bib number on. I had a little trouble and had Paul help me put on the last two pins. Sufficed, I went to lineup at the start line. I adjusted one of the pins to try and pull the bib number tighter (as in more aero).
But it's more of a guideline. You can just go up and get in line to start. They aren't calling out anyone's name or anything. They take your number when you get up there and write it down. And everyone has a timing chip as well.
They form two lines, and start 1 person every 15 seconds. Each line has a "holder" so you can clip in before you start. So each holder is sending people off every 30 seconds. There were about 4 or 5 people in front of me in the inside line. A couple of guys were chatting about The Tour, as we waited our turn.
Finally I got to the front. The "holder" held my bike. They gave me a 10 second warning, then 5, then GO. I started a little hard, but you feel good and you have a lot of adrenaline pumping.
The first minute I averaged 403 watts, and even through the first 5 minutes I was at a 331 watt average. The first mile felt pretty good. Then I hit that frontstretch for the first time. That wind was pretty stiff.
Plus the track is not flat. You would think that it is, but it is not. As you come around the 4th turn back onto the frontstretch, there is a slight uphill. I had some pretty wide variances in speed. Basically I was hitting 32 to 34 mph on the backstretch going downhill with the wind. Then on the front I was at 23 to 24 mph against the wind.
|Speed and Cadence|
It got pretty tough in the middle, mentally and physically. Laps 4 and 5 were my slowest ones. I could see the power start dropping off. I tried to push, but I'm sure some of it had to do with the 15 mile run I did that morning.
Lap (1) 2:55 MPH Avg: 29.39
Lap (2) 2:58 MPH Avg: 28.89
Lap (3) 3:01 MPH Avg: 28.41
Lap (4) 3:05 MPH Avg: 27.80
Lap (5) 3:05 MPH Avg: 27.80
Lap (6) 3:02 MPH Avg: 28.26
Lap (7) 2:54 MPH Avg: 29.56
The results say I averaged 28.5 mph which I was pretty happy with. It would have been nice to break 21, just 3 seconds off. My garmin only said 9.96 miles, and I couldn't quite hit the stop button as I was coasting at the end, so it had a 28.3 average. I was glad to have averaged 300 watts. I did more at Rock Hill, but I'll take it after running 15 miles.
That put me 5th overall, and the first 'recreation' race. Meaning other than tandem or CAT rated riders. Times were pretty slow across the board with the headwind compared to early races here. Full Results HERE.
|Number and 'Ownway Apparel' Suit|
Got home after 11pm, pretty late for me. Put everything up. Set the alarm for 4:30am so I could work on my true passion: swimming.
|Me, Paul, and Chester|