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Topic: Course mapping, back into racing.
Getting back into riding and racing the last few days has also provided a decent chance to test out new toys. But these toys need decent software to be of any use, so currently I'm testing out Ascend (for Mac).

Thursday was a quick hit out at Westgate, though that ended up being a little bit quicker than it probably should have been - with the hardtail not having been ridden since the You Yangs sludgefest, it turns out that despite the fact I'd replaced the chain, cassette and bottom bracket, the brakes had completely had it, making trying to wipe off speed before corners next to impossible, and controling speed through corners unpredictable. Add to that a slow leak which had deflated the front tyre sufficiently by the start of the second race, I opted to pull the pin very early. But at least I got a copy of the course layout :D
Westgate Jan 18, 2009

Saturday was time to wake up early, though only another dozen people had the same idea. With a very small crowd the track was run in reverse direction - something I've been very vocal about taking issue to due to the safety (or lack of) of having a barbed wire fence running 50cm from a bumpy descent where speeds of 50km/h are reached.
Due to the low density though we didn't have to fly downhill as fast as possible, and the furrows on the climb became excruciatingly painful after about lap four. Adam was opening up about 100-150m per lap on me, and about half that gap was also being opened up behind me to the next rider, so for 40 minute plus a lap I spent time-trialling at 180+/-3bpm.

Bushy Park graph
Bushy Park

Unfortunately I didn't realise that doing a hard effort the day after a crit, having done a crit the day before, would wear me out a bit quicker than the 4 hours I'd intended to be out for. 8am was too early given it was only around 11 degrees, so by 9 I was on the road sans arm warmers.
The last few times out at Lysterfield I've been trying to work on the M2006 course - last week it was done on the Anthem, this week on the hardtail, which proved much harder to ride on the final descent. But overall the laps were quicker by about a minute (probably mostly the bike) - the aim over the next few weeks will be to keep chopping seconds.

One thing's becoming clear is that we'll need to go back and do some more work on the re-constructed berms, as they're getting some holes dug into them already.

This coming week is supposed to be a rest week, so I'll have to see how I organise that, in order to be in the best fitness I can manage before Mt Buller in a fortnight. No National Championships at Stromlo for me, unfortunately.
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