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May 27, 2011

Saturday 21st May was a big day for me and my Kronus. It was the day we lined up against two god’s of British time trialling in the National 10 mile TT Championships.

I say ‘lined up’. Because of the seeding we raced nearly 2 hours before Bradley Wiggins and Michael Hutchinson, but at least I can say that we were in the same race, competed on the same course, and in roughly the same conditions. My Kronus didn’t let me down. Named after the Greek Titan God of Time, she’s helped me reach new heights this season, posting personal best’s on all courses I’ve raced on and culminating in an all time PB on the Tuesday evening preceding the National 10. So it was I turned up at Crathorne in North Yorkshire on the Saturday with some good form, a new pb of 21:14 and a gleaming Kronus.

This wasn’t to be a fairy tale day though. A strong headwind of over 40mph meant the slightly longer outward leg was very tough. But the Kronus transferred what power I had through the pedals and into the back wheel instantly – she helped me as much as she could, but time trialling is the race of truth, and truthfully I was having a bad day. At least the return was fast. Very fast.

Still I knew this was the slowest I’d gone all season, and a glance at my watch at the finish confirmed this. Two hours later Wiggins would show what gulf there is between a Tour de France pro and an amateur who manages to fit in 8 hours training a week. He posted a phenomenal 19:14. Knowing the wind had been dropping during the afternoon could not take away from the fact that Wiggins put over 4 minutes into me. Still, Wiggins gave everyone a beating, including the domestic time trialling god Michael Hutchinson, who was dumped into 2nd place by 44 secs.

Although my legs are not in the same league as Wiggins, I can say that my Kronus isn’t far off his Team Sky TT rig. A monocoque carbon frame, moulded into a sculptured aero profile, the frame transfers my power straight down. She’s sure footed in cross winds, and for a TT bike handles and corners really well. I’ve been doing TT specific intervals on her this season, and she instantly feels 5 mph faster as soon as I sit on her. This might be psychological but when it comes to racing, psychology is all important. I always feel 10 foot taller on her, more confident and more like a racing cyclist.

Although I’ve seen massive improvements in my fitness this year, I know there is still room for improvement. Happily I know the same cannot be said of my TT bike. I doubt she can be improved on.

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