NorCal District Time Trial….My Bars Let Me Down..

June 13, 2006 · Print This Article

by Liz Benishin

Dist TT
Sattley CA.
MW 45+

Ah, a wonderful day for a race. Time Trialin’ is my game, and this is the second biggest one of the season. I was rested, prepared (or so I thought), warmed up, on time.

My bike had a nice coat of Pedro’s bike lust. Disc holes taped over with precision. Every hair tucked under the aero head-bucket. Lucky green skin suit was donned. Pins precisely holding number in exact position.

Only 2 in my group, and unfortunately in disregard of TT protocol, I was to start first in category, not last as the prev years champ is supposed to. Last year Dawn (Velo Girls) was behind me by 12 or so seconds, so I needed every advantage. She was the only other competitor in my category.

Off to a good start. Till I hit the crevasses in the road…the first 4 miles has linear cracks that you slam over every 20 feet or so. With the pounding, my aerobars headed downward in increments. I tried to hit the bumps while concurrently pulling hard on the bars but no movement (at least they weren’t flapping around). So every few minutes they racheted down.

I figured after I got off the bumps at least they would stay stable, which they did. I kept a good pace, steady HR, but 2 things were on my mind…at what point would my luck run out with these damn bars, and when would Dawn pass me.

The turnaround was a big trick to do with the cowhorns and brakes somewhere about 4 inches lower than usual, and rotated about 30 degrees. I managed to make it safely around without putting myself in the ditch, and get going again. I figured since the wind was mostly tailwind, my yogic TT positon was not going to lose me too much time. I figured I was scooping lots of air with my arms which were now fully extended, at about a 45 degree angle.

I saw where Dawn was, and calculated ! was at that point maybe 10 seconds ahead. I did manage to pass a few riders from the 35s, and 40s.

Hammered and hoped. Snool flowed freely.

Back on the bumps, the bars continued their downward journey. I figured the faster I went the sooner I would get out of this position. By this time my forarms were achy. I also had to support myself with my back and abdomen, because I didn’t want to put any weight on the front of the bike. Core Strengthening came in handy.

Passed the 2 mile and 1 mile cones. At this point noted the tip of the aerobars were even with the braking surface of the front wheel. I tried not to think of how I would eventually come to a stop.

Crossed the finish line in an unimpressive 1:04:05. A personal worst. Wayne, Ted (Dawn’s Husband) and Skip (my friend Lea’s husband) watched me roll over the line. Skip mentioned “that doesn’t look right”.

So over the line, I slowed down, and had a hard time getting my hands on the brakes. Had 2 choices….dive into the gravel to stop, or find someone to grab me. Seeing rocky ravines made me think that the first choice wouldn’t work. Plus there was a big truck behind me. Finally saw some guys by their cars (who didn’t have on cycling shoes..) and I told them of my difficulty in as few words as I could. They ran up beside me, one guy grabbed me around the waist, held me steady and I disengaged myself from my naughty bike. Whew!! “You better talk to your mechanic!!” Well, it was me who tightened the bars after my trip to Canada. And didn’t check it since.

Still, I managed to win. By a shake of a lamb’s tail.

Wayne made fun of me most of the way home. Singing “I fought the bars, and the bars won”, and naming this as “the year the bars let you down” (to add to the year you missed your start, the year you got pulled over by the cop, the year the lock ring rubbed..)

respectfully submitted
Liz the Fred

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3 Responses to “NorCal District Time Trial….My Bars Let Me Down..”

  1. marscat on June 14th, 2006 11:00 am

    Hey Liz,

    ooh those bumps are mean…and that Wayne!

    congrats on your win.

  2. PAB on June 14th, 2006 12:24 pm

    did you have glitter?

    didn’t think so.

    would have prevented such drama….

  3. Lula-La Lula-Hula on June 15th, 2006 12:47 pm

    Wayne, you should add on your list:
    “the Liz won the TT despite it all”

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