June wrap-up and more pro cycling comparisons

Six months down, six months to go! That’s right, we’re half way through 2021 already. I hope all you folks in the Northern Hemisphere are making the most of your long summer days to get some decent mileage in.

We’ve officially passed the Winter Solstice down here, so our days should be getting slightly longer as we head into the second half of the year. My total distance did take a hit this month, but that was a given considering the weather. I still rolled over 1000+km in June so I’m pretty happy with that. I’m on a shade over 6500km for the year so far (4000+ miles).

Parts of Australia have been thrown into more snap COVID lockdowns, with cases of the “delta” variant spiking in some capital cities. Tasmania is still COVID-free and unrestricted thankfully. Less than 10% of the Australian population have been fully vaccinated (compared to over 45% in both UK and USA). That’s not so much because it’s anti-vax here, just that the vaccine roll-out has been a shocker.

To get in the mood for the TdF Stage 5 time trial, I thought I’d ride an “all out” effort over a similar duration (on my Trek 5200, not a full-on time trial bike). I’m certainly not built for time trialling, but I love going “fast” against the clock and riding on the rivet.

I chose a 20km time trial, whereas the professionals did 27.2km. Mathieu Van der Poel, wearing Yellow at the start of the day, rolled down the ramp pushing a big man’s 58T chainring on his Canyon Speedmax. Here’s how we compared…

Me – 34 min 52 sec – 34.5 kph – NP 226 watts
MvDP – 32 min 31 sec – 50.2 kph – NP 452 watts

Above: Mathieu Van der Poel, Stage 5 of the 2021 Tour de France

With a normalised power of 226 watts I was very close to my limit, actually to be honest I’m not sure I could have pushed many more watts. I obviously need more aero! Mathieu Van der Poel I’m sure was absolutely on his limit as he tore around the course putting down DOUBLE my wattage (with 700km already in the legs from the previous four days). It boggles the mind. It also makes me want to get a time trial bike again!

I hope you’ve been watching the Tour de France. It’s been an eventful opening five stages. Some horrific crashes marring the opening days, but also some incredibly worthy wins. It’s going to be an exciting race to Paris!

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