August 15 was the 4th Time Trial of the Charlotte Motor Speedway Time Trial Series. It was also the night for the Team Time Trial that is raced once a year.
I was originally scheduled to start at 7:15 but a nice thunderstorm came through right at 6 and the start was delayed by about 30 minutes. I have been riding pretty well so I was hoping for a good time. I had a decent warm up around the inside track but was having a hard time staying motivated during my warm-up which is usually a good sign.
I started my time trial about 7:45, 15 seconds after my teammate Jasen Taylor. So i had a rabbit to chase. I started off and tried real hard not to over do it. I saw Jasen on the backstretch so that gave me a little momentum. I also noticed my speed was well above 30mph which meant that we had a tailwind on the backstretch and a headwind on the uphill front stretch - never a good sign.
I caught Jasen at the end of the first lap. I was feeling good and my first lap time was 2:53 which put me on a good pace. Now if that would have only lasted. My second lap was 2:59 which was good, but not a good sign for what the next 5 laps were gonig to be. I noticed that the wind was picking up and i was struggling going into turn 1. I usually don't have any problems with turn 1.
Lap 3 was 3:05, so now my mind is playing with me. Lap 4 was 3:03 so I've settled in. Lap 5 was 3:02 so maybe I've gotten past my 'bad' spot in the TT. Lap 6 was 3:04 so I'm riding steady now. Lap 7 was 3:01 so I had a little left in the tank.
My overall time was 21:09:35 (28.36mph) which was good for 3rd in the Cat 3 Category. I missed 2nd place by .28 of a second and 1st place by 6.5 seconds. So the Cat 3 guys are pretty close.
I'm riding well and really want to shoot for my PR. I'm going to work hard for one more month to see if I can do it. I'm going to try to get to Brushy once a week until the next time trial, try to ride my TT bike during the week and actually do some stretching. My PR is 20:28 so i have my work cut out for me.
TEAM TIME TRIAL REPORT
After the individual time trial, I hung out in the garage with my TTT teammates, Mark Peterson, Jeff Hare, and Derek Kidwell. I registered us for the Open Division because I figured we'd run pretty well.
We hadn't practiced as a team and decided to 'wing it'. We spoke a little about the plan and rolled to the start line. We decided that I would lead the team to turn 1. Of course when we got into the starters box, I realized I was in my small ring. Duh....
So we started and I managed to get a little gap on the other guys so I was able to get into my big ring pretty quickly. The team joined up and I led us into turn 1. Mark Peterson took his pull, followed by Derek and Jeff. We started strong and quickly got up to speed.
I think around the 2nd lap, the Strong and Focused group passed us. I wasn't happy about this so when I went to the front, i told Mark to hold on. I slowly raised our pace and managed to get around the S&F team on the backstretch and pulled off. On the 3rd lap, Jeff fell off the pace so we were down to 3 guys for the last 4 laps. S&F passed us again on the home stretch and I led us past them again on the back stretch as they dropped one of their riders.
Derek started struggling on lap 5. This was his first TTT and he spent too much time in the wind when he pulled off the front. Mark took a big dig and I went to the front with about a lap and half to go. I continued to make sure that Derek stayed with Mark and me. I pulled off going into turn 3 and Mark drove us into the final stretch. We entered pit road and when as hard as we could and finished with a time of 21:02 which was good for 3rd in the Open Category and 3rd Overall.
I really enjoy TTTs because I can work really hard on the front and then recover in the draft and drill it when I get to the front. Good times and we are already waiting for next years TTT!