Lovelo Bison Hill Climb & Bourne Wheelers Hilly TT, 14-15 Sept 2019

A double header weekend for me, which ended up ticking off two of my season goals. I had done the club hill climb before and was intending to enter some Open events last year, but my interrupted season meant that got postponed until this year. A great little hill down near Whipsnade Zoo was the venue for my first Open (Goal 1), and the 3 minute effort didn’t really suit me, but I did my best! I was quite pleased with how I paced it, although I felt I could have gone a bit deeper near the top - I did get a 2 minute and 3 minute power PB. When I saw the other results it was a chastening experience - several riders had put 40 seconds on me! More work needed, or perhaps longer hills will suit me better.

Talking of which, on Sunday, another early start led me to the Bourne Wheelers 18 mile hilly TT. Essentially 9 miles uphill (mainly) into a headwind to the turn, followed by a downhill (mainly) with a helpful wind and a very fast finish. The section up to the turn was really hard, with the speed leaking away and my legs dying, but on the way back it was fantastic. My plan was to try and hold 10 mile TT power for the first half and then do what I could on the way back. But I find it much harder to pace rolling TTs, and my average power was again much lower than I intended. When I reached HQ I had the third fastest time, and I was very pleased to hold on to this for my first ever overall podium, which has been a season goal I thought I might not reach, after two 4th places.

Overall a satisfying but very tiring weekend!

Tim Phillips

Tim PhillipsHill climb, TT