Tour de L'Aude Time Trial
"Time trials in the middle of a big tour like this are always interesting as riders have different goals for the stage. A rider like Lynn Bessette (Saturn) or Hanka (still in the leader's jersey) is trying to gain a bit of time on some of the other 'climbers.' Others, like Elizabeth Emery are racing for a stage win. Women that may usually be competitive at a time trial but are riding as a support rider at this tour will not waste the effort at riding hard in the time trial." -- Giana Roberge
Today was the 12.8 km individual time trial (TT) and once again that beautiful Morgul Bismark TT bike is doing me proud. I feel so comfortable on it. I discovered here that I could use some cornering practice and some breaking practice for these Euro TTs which are anything but out and back.
We rode the course in the morning and there was no wind and I felt pretty good, especially considering that amount of racing we've done up to this point. Then the day continued and continued and nap time came upon us and the day continued. Finally, we got ready to go and warm-up a little before 3pm. Teammate Julie Young and I rode a quick lap of the course again. Then I got onto the trainer as is my want. I prefer so much to use the trainer for TT warm-ups. It eliminates worries of getting lost, of having punctures in the middle of no where, of not being able to find roads without traffic and yet still be close to the start.
We've been staying in the same hotel for two days now. It's very nice and was right near the start. I was able to go back there -- to the one room we kept to take showers before we headed off after the TT to our next hotel -- take a shower and hope that my "best time of the day" stuck. Hanka was the last to go -- since she's the leader -- so we all counted off which place I was in as US national team manager Jarek Bek talked to us on the radio.
I am the only one with a TT bike here. Julie and Pam Schuster worked on TT technique and took a "day off" pro style. In terms of results, we haven't seen them yet. As usual I don't have that kind of useful information about the actual race. I expect this result will solidify my spot in the first column of results which I had just squeaked onto the day before. Before the end of the race, we have two double days starting with tomorrow's Pic de Nore hilltop morning stage at 9:30am. At least it's a morning race. Is it possible to race on bread and jam alone?
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