Sporting Fixed Gear 27.6 mile Time Trial
Saturday 30th October

Unaffected by torrential rain Matthew Theobalds (C.S. Grupetto) won this new event last Saturday with the fast time of 1hour 6minutes 3 seconds for three laps of the tough Gracious Pond circuit.

Matthew Theobalds

Estelle Rogers (Rollapaluza CC) took the handicap prize with an actual time of 1.18.16, a creditable ride which gave her fifth place on scratch.

This race came about through the cancellation of the Hounslow 100 last July and was created to find a home for the “Best on Fixed Wheel” prize from that event. Although there was no question of getting near the distance of the original race, it was felt that by using a twisting, hilly circuit at least some of the difficulty of an endurance event on a single gear would be retained. On the day heavy showers added to the riders' problems.

Estelle Rogers

Unlike some time trials the outcome of Saturday's race was not predictable. Matthew Theobalds has almost no experience of riding against the watch although he is clearly a promising roadman, having gained his second category licence this year. Apart from unfamiliarity with the discipline, the bike he used was new to him and his 95" gear was presumably chosen by guesswork. However at 90 rpm this gear gives about 25mph, and while most of us would doubt our ability to maintain such a speed on a hard circuit, Matthew was proved correct in believing that it was within his power.

The outright fastest time of the day came from Nic Hutchings, who recorded the super time of 1.4.26, roughly equivalent to 58 minutes for 25 miles. However, this was done on variable gears, so it could not count as the winning ride. Nic was an established time trial rider a few years ago with some very fast times to his credit, but 2010 has been a comeback season for him, and he has been concentrating on road racing where he has gone from a fourth to a first category licence holder. So it was no great shock that his was the fastest time; the surprise was that Matthew Theobalds was only one and a half minutes slower on a course where most followers of the sport would have expected variable gears to be a great advantage.

View the full results here

Chris Lovibond