maanantai 25. kesäkuuta 2018

Racing as part of training: Ahvenisto GP

Year by year I'm more and more reluctant to execute the hard training sessions.

Year by year I need more rest days. And if I'm doing less than before, what I really have to maintain is the intensity, and leave some junk miles aside.

My way of getting some high intensity training is to go racing.

In a race I really have the motivation to go all out. Nowadays, I rarely reach similar power or heart rate on my own.

Ahvenisto Race Circuit is the most hilly car race track in Finland. Several times a year there are bicycle races, too. Last weekend I took part in Ahvenisto GP (see Strava).

The track doesn't suit me at all. There is a lot of climbing to do, and the main ascend is up to 15%. Then again, if I wasn't racing I wouldn't find the motivation to do similar uphill repeats – and particularly to maintain high HR between climbs.

Here's how my GoPro saw the race:

Still photos shot at Ahvenisto: Mikko Rantanen

torstai 7. kesäkuuta 2018

10 vuotta on pitkä matka

Huomasin, että tämän blogin kammet ovat pyörineet jo kymmenen vuotta. Ilokseni statistiikka näyttää, että olen kuluttanut enemmän aikaa fillarin satulassa kuin näppiksen ääressä. 

During the 10 years of this blog I've found time for cycling, too.

maanantai 4. kesäkuuta 2018

Getting some fresh aero – FFWD F6R

I bought a set of pre-owned FFWD F6R aero wheels and got them ready to go on Saturday. Naturally, I couldn't resist a small road test right away and a longer club ride on Sunday – even though I felt a bit dead after two days of gardening.

The tubular wheelset is light, only 1350 g. It is about 80 g less than my Shimano Dura-ace C24 (clincher) set, and my American Classic 420 aero3 (clincher) weighs a tad over 1.5 kg. To be honest, that means nothing. I didn't notice any difference in accelerating or climbing the small hills that we've got around here. If forced to find something I'd say that FFWD and American Classic are more stiff and rigid than C24s.

I didn't see it coming but felt it right away: it's oh so smooth! The coarse tarmac, the potholes, every manhole cover felt softer. It felt like the muddled soundscape when it's snowy.

I can't say how much of this is due to the wheels and how much do I have to thank the tubular tyres. Whichever, having the same 7.1/7.3 bar (103/106 psi) felt very different from my other wheelsets with clincher tyres.

The average wind speed was 5 m/s (18 km/h) on Sunday, some stronger gusts here and there. Despite the rim being 60mm deep, the wheels didn't cause any issues. Of course my 84 kg own weight helps here.

It would be great to compare rides with some power readings. Another option would be to ride the local TT course with different set-ups and compare time and heart zones.

I'm happy to own two road bikes now, both good and very different from each other.