Mt Donna Buang TT & Oceania TT Championships

Mt Donna Buang TT – 23 Mar 2013

I think this is my favourite TT on the calender – totally honest & stunning course, well run, 17km long and ascending 1,080m – it’s the business.

I opted for every ounce of aero advantage – Giant Propel bike, skinsuit and KASK Bambino helmet. I attribute my time (a big PB) 100% to this technology.  I barely broke a sweat and hardly had to pedal.

This is the only photo I have of the day…. not very artistic.

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In relation to training for this race: The usual method to climb Donna involves an all-day affair of riding over the Dandenongs, doing one rep and then grovelling home to eat everything in sight after burning 5000+ KJ.

In my ongoing attempt to cut the crap out of my training, I’ve been doing 20 minutes rollers at home, driving out, parking in Warburton, doing three reps and then driving home.  That’s it.

This provides 51km/3240m of climbing + 51km of recovery while descending = pure quality.

A couple of Saturdays ago I did a great session: riding the Propel for reps 1 & 3 and TT bike for rep 2.  Power was 325w, 315w, 300w with descending cadence of 75, 70, 65 and duration for each 54-58 mins.  A key part of this session is never getting out of the saddle/aerobars and maintaining perfect symmetry in the upper body.  I even ran into Mr and Mrs Miller at the summit.  See? All the BIG DOGS hang out at Donna. You should too.

2013 Oceania Time Trial Championships – Canberra

Step 1: Win the game of car boot Tetris.  Victory #1.

Step 2: Drive to Canberra (Tuesday). See the Submarine. Run into my favourite ranga at McDonalds, Nathan Elliot (who also won the Warburton Road Race on Sunday….what a mad dog.)

Step 4: Be thankful I’m not a truck driver. Respect to them; what a life that must be.

Step 4: Arrive. Find coffee. There’s only one worthy place in Canberra that I know of: Lonsdale Street Roasters in Braddon.

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Step 5: Recce the TT Course (Wednesday). I used one word to describe it: legit. There was hardly a moment of flat road. I motorpaced it behind the car and got to know it all pretty well. It would be a horrible course to race without having ridden it beforehand.

Step 6: Race (Thursday). 5th place. To be honest it was a pretty disappointing performance.  Everything appeared good: preparation, focus, pacing – but I just couldn’t produce the power on the day.  I felt strong for the whole 40k but the numbers just weren’t there, around 8% lower than my best.

We broke up the drive home by staying in Falls Creek for a night, and I took advantage of the chance to climb Falls in the late afternoon.

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The view from the Quay West car park is always great. Staying at Quay West is even better.  I could happily live there and ride my bike and read books forever.

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Anyone who has been in the below pool at Falls knows the suffering that occurs here.  It is COLD.  Gives me an instant ice cream headache just thinking about it.  It’s also a pretty cool spot to hang out in summer, regularly attended by world champions and olympic gold medalists from a bunch of sports.

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That’s it for TTs for a little while.  I’m getting some new toys to play with over the coming weeks – new shoes, a new ergo (an absolute game-changer) and a few other bits which I’ll write more about.

– NB

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