The British universities and colleges sport (BUCS) cycling time trial championships were held over two weekends, with the 10 mile event first, and the 25 mile even the weekend after. As usual Oxford and Cambridge university’s cycling clubs organised one event each.

For me the 10 mile event fell on the end of a week 3 of my training cycle (4 is the recovery & test week), so my legs had 3 weeks of accumulated fatigue in them.

Unfortunately you cannot peak for every single race, and Ironman France, scarily enough only a mere 7 weeks away now, definitely takes priority. Said Saturday was however a beautiful sunny day, and I was quite happy about being there. I didn’t ride badly, but the legs didn’t quite respond, and my time reflects that. I was only beaten by Corrine Hall, who is a pretty decent cyclist, so I was pleased that she was only 40 seconds ahead of me. So one silver medal for Sussex uni! The real challenge in the 25 mile race the weekend after was getting to the start in the first place. I had stayed over at my friends’ house after they had a lovely BBQ party the day before. With my journey now shortened to 55 miles I was quite relaxed about leaving on time, only to then find the M11 closed due to an accident. Not my usual training ground, unable to locate a map in the car, and with my phone not finding the GPS signal, I got predictably lost in the rather beautiful countryside. Ooops!

I eventually found a large scale map, which gave me the names of some villages which I headed for. After a 60 min detour I was back on my route. I arrived at HQ 45 min before my start which seems ages, only here the start was 6 miles slightly uphill into a headwind away and the race instructions told you to leave 30 min to get there. I still had to register, get changed, put contact lenses in, and put the bike together. Stresslevel through the roof!

The result was a 31 mile TT with a 4 min rest interval after 6 miles… The course and conditions (It was soooo windy) didn’t lend themselves to fast times, but my 1:04:20 was enough to win the BUCS title, improving on my 3rd place last year. I finished off the weekend with the BUCS sprint tri the following day, where I managed a credible 5th place – as you can see I can’t get enough of racing. More time trials, and the TriGrandPrix middle distance triathlon coming up! 😉 Lizzy

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