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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just completed by first time trial, a 20K reasonably flat loop in Marine, IL. What a blast, especially after a very disappointing and very discouraging first race in mid April. My first race was a very hilly, very windy, very cold, 44 mile 2lap race in Hillsboro, IL where I got dropped in the first three miles. In this TT I finished 5th out of about 11 or 12 in my group, but more important my time (21.7 mph) was very respectable throughout the majority of the Cat 5 racers and even some of the Cat 4 racers. I raced in the Masters 45+.

No question I am in better shape than my first race but I was especially encoraged that I was as fast as the majority of Cat 5 guys, and all but 1 or 2 of the Masters 45+ guys. After my first race I really thought I didn't belong in a race at all. Next up is another TT, where they have a 55+ Masters so who knows, maybe I can get top 3. Then after that a 26 mile Cat 5 race.

I'm told a set of aero bars my save 30 seconds or more, so I'm going on line today to see if it's worth the cost. Thanks to all who provided encouragement after my first disappointment, as I think this is going to be fun. Mick
 

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Your situation was pretty similar to mine. I had trouble keeping up in Crit races. I tried a TT race and found that I enjoyed it much more. After about 4 time trials, I have no problem keeping up in Crits now!

FYI, I had similar finish time to yours on my first 20K TT (in May of this year). I am up near a 31 minute now (near 24 mph) and getting faster each time. You learn a lot about going fast from racing. The aero bars will help, but make sure you get some practice with them before racing (mainly to get the fit right). The next step after the aero bars would be the wheels, which are quite expensive. Good luck!
 

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grampy bone said:
The next step after the aero bars would be the wheels, which are quite expensive. Good luck!
Wheels can be done on the cheap. This thing works great, IF you have a box profile rim like open pro or DT RR1.1:

http://www.excelsports.com/new.asp?page=8&description=Wheel+Cover&vendorCode=CHAERO&major=1&minor=24

I've got one, and it helps a lot once you get to about 25mph or so.

Get a used low spoke count, high-profile front wheel off of ebay and you'd be good to go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
thanks

Grampy and bobsmargs, thanks for the input. Actually after the race I happened to be parked next to the guy who finished 2nd overall in the TT and he is the one who suggested the aero bars and wheels. He was in a full race set up and averaged about 29 mph. He passed me like I was standing still. It sounded like a helicopter when he went by. Based on what he suggested I thought I 'd try the aero bars first. I will practice first as I'm sure they are more difficult to get used to than they look. Bobsmargs, I checked your link to the rear wheel. I had no idea you could buy these as that cost. Thanks again for the input. And Grampy that's encouraging to know that with work and practive your speeds have continued to improve. I'd be delighted if I could get up into the 24 mph range.

Bobsmargs, I just looked at your link again. I realize now (duh) that the link is actually an insert for the rear wheel. How difficult is it to add and remove the insert?
 

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It takes me about 10 minutes, first time was more like 20. You remove your cassette, and then screw the 2 halves together with about 8 screws. Then you make sure it is centered and put your cassette back on. You want to use locktite on the screws (at least every now and then) so that they don't rattle loose. Like I said, it only works well with box profile rims like open pro or similar. wheelbuilder.com has a similar product that they will cut to fit your rims, but I don't really know any more about it that what is on their website. I'm pretty sure the disc helps below 25mph, but when I get hit that speed if feels like the afterburners have come on with the disc, vs without.

Aerobars first is probably a good idea, and they are kinda hard to get used to, both the postion and the handling. Even after a lot of practice, I have trouble with handling in gusty crosswinds and turny descents. In a race, especially at first, it will be faster to move to the drops and
keep hammering in these circumstances than to stay on the bars and fight to stay in control.


Good luck!
 
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