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PaulEdStateTTTThe team time trial (TTT) is a beautiful event. There are few things more aesthetically pleasing in cycling than the sight of a well drilled team, all in the same kit, driving the bikes forward in a disciplined TTT formation. Unlike the individual time trial (ITT) where drafting is not allowed, TTT riders use drafting as the main strategy, with each rider taking a turn at the front while the others 'sit on' behind. After each turn, the rider on the front pulls over and allows the next rider to take the front, while the rider who pulls off goes to the back, forming a single pace line. The finishing time in a TTT is taken on a specific rider in the team. In a nine man TTT, like in the Tour de France, the time is taken on the fifth man to cross the line. In local and State events, there are usually two and four man TTTs. In the four man TTT, the finishing time is taken on the third finisher. In the two man TTT, the time is taken on the second finisher.


This year at the TTT, we split our team from previous years into three teams with the idea of making an impact on the event for Canyon Velo. We wanted to get CV onto the podium and if possible, get a State Championship jersey for the team.
Mission Accomplished!


Hans J, riding the two man 120+ with "friend of CV" Keith P, won the State Championship. Great Job Hans and Keith!
Our team, consisting of CV riders Paul L, Dick W, me, and "friend of CV" Fernan L got onto the podium, finishing 2nd in the four man 240+ for the silver.


Pastor Bob and Ryan M finished 4th in the hotly contested two man 90+ after having an issue at the start.


Speaking of issues, our team followed the tried and true "Hans Method" of arriving at the start house 10 minutes in advance of our start time. It was a good thing that we did. With about 8 minutes to go, Paul looks down and says, "Oh #%$#!, I have a flat!" Looking down we all saw the biggest sticker you have ever seen sticking out of his back tire.
I told Paul to quickly ride back to the car and get his spare wheel. He did just that. We kept looking across the field to see if he was coming. As we went up to the line with less than a minute to go we could see him leaving the car. He arrived back at the start house with only 15 seconds left in our count-down. That was close.


EdFernanPaulArrangementEarlier, before going to the start house area, we had our team strategy talk. Dick's assignment was to sit on as long as he could and then ride an ITT to the finish. Fernan told us he was worried about being hurt by going too fast at the start, so we decided to have Paul start off and set a reasonable pace, because I can be a notoriously fast starter. So it was all set. Except….
With Paul's flat experience, Paul comes to the line all jacked up on adrenaline! He looked like a caged tiger, or should I say bulldog, then he starts us out at 33 mph from the gun! Now everyone knows that Paul can't sprint, but today he just jumped off the line. It was impressive.


This made Dick's ITT a bit longer than we all planned.


After Paul's pull, I kept it going well over 30 mph. Then Fernan pulled through, and then Paul and me, again both well over 30. The next thing we know Fernan is gone.


We really put him in the hurt box.


Paul and I then began the process of trying to go fast while helping to get Fernan around the course. Because the time is taken on the third man, we could not leave him.


I will say this, what Fernan did was to ride the most gutsy ride I've seen in a long time, and maybe ever. He was stuck in a Paul and Eddie sandwich and he was the pickle!


We were both on pretty good days, so here is what we decided to do. One of us would pull, and we told Fernan to stay on the wheel of the guy at the front, while the other did what was necessary to keep Fernan on the wheel. We looked and sounded like a couple of drill sergeants!


Pat M was there with his daughter and they were doing a great job for CV taking photos. They heard some choice words as we went by, nice but pointed!


With this method, we actually put some time into our competition on the headwind sections, but we just could not keep it going fast enough with this arrangement on the downwind parts.


In the end we came in around 45 seconds behind the first place team over the approximately 40K course.
I want to give Fernan a huge compliment for turning himself inside out. He rode in the hurt box for 38 of the 40Ks. I don't think I could have done that.


I also want to give Dick a huge "shout out" as well. In very tough windy and cold conditions, Dick rode the entire course and finished strong. That was impressive as well.


DickFernanPaulEdSilverAlso, a big thanks goes to Pat and his daughter for coming out to get this all on the camera.
As the eternal optimist, wait until next year…


God Bless and we'll see you out there. Ed

 

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