Tour of Southland Day 1 – Team Time Trial and Bluff stage

Welcome to my first blog on the 2010 Tour of Southland.

I’m riding for the Calder Stewart/Bike NZ team, principally for Hayden Roulston to win his fourth overall title.  I’ve been in his team twice before when he’s won (07 and 08) and attribute riding for Roly as the biggest step I’ve taken in my cycling career.

I rode with Calder Stewart last year and know all the management and support staff.  This year we have a completely new set of riders – Roly, Greg Henderson, Jeremy Vennell, Brett Tivers and Jason Christie.

Today started with the team time trial – which we won!  We had a ‘blow out’ yesterday, which made all of us (non-pro’s – everyone but Hendy and Roly) feel like we had our work cut out for us!  We needed to finish with 4 (of the 6).  2 laps of just over 4kmcourse around central Invercargill, full gas – 56km per hour!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well it didn’t quite end up that fast as Jason and I, particulary were struggling!  Actually this is the first time that I’ve been the weakest but had to hold on – Vennell and Tivers had dropped out after the first lap.  So basically we had to stick to geter for the last lap – I WAS HURTING.  Average heart rate 183bpm for 9min 47sec- that’s 95% of Max Heart Rate.

Well we won!  Meaning Roly in yellow (he drew the long straw meaning he crossed the line first).  Hendy in Sprint Ace; Jas in U23 and me in KING OF THE MOUNTAINS!!!!!!  First time I’ve worn ajersey at this tour.

Back to the hotel for a quick rub down and reiki (I felt so much better for it too as I was totally stuffed after the time trial), then onto the Bluff Hill stage.  The plan was to let a break go then reel them back in before the final nasty climb up above Bluff.  All went according to plan except Roly came 3rd (he was hoping to win).  Oh well – Yates in yellow and now Share the Road on the front for tomorrow’s 165k stage!

Here are my daily stats:

Resting Heart Rate: ~47

Hours slept: ~5 and 1/2

Time woken up: 3:30am

TTT: official time 9.47, computer time: 10.02 avHR 183, max191.  Av spd: 50.8kph

Bluff Hill: including small ride back to Invercargill: 175mins no heart rate data.  193.9k.  av spd: 35.7, max 67.3 (going down Bluff)

More data to come when they put the Garmin on my bike!  Free for the week (and hopefully a little longer!) for our team.

Photos to come tomorrow