North Cheshire Clarion launched the new standards for 2011 last week. Standards are based on your times in official events throughout the year, ours starting at Club then Bronze, Silver, Gold and then the super human platinum. To achieve a standard you have to get it across 3 different distances/events for example if you got Bronze in a 10 mile TT and Club standard in a 25 mile TT and a 60 mile sportive then for the year you would receive Club standard.
I have a running joke that I am discriminated against because of my youth; times for standards are separated into age groups and are obviously more difficult the younger you are. Last year we had 3 age categories, under 40, 40-49 and over 50. This year though after a few drafts the age categories change every year after 30 years old.
I was looking to achieve a Bronze Standard this year as I thought it would reflect with the training I would put in. I was looking to do it across 3 TT’s, the Kilton 8.75, 10 and 25 mile. Looking at the first draft of the new standards I was happy to see the Kilton TT times more achievable. Last year my best time wasn’t even good enough for Club whereas based on these times I wouldn’t be a million miles off a Bronze.
The 10 mile was also doable for me with the correct training but the 25 mile looked to be out of reach as it’s changed dramatically. Last year’s Bronze time was 1:12.30 whereas this year its 1:08:14 which means I would have to maintain my Bronze time 10 mile speed but over more than double the distance. I thought this is a little harsh and put my views forward which were taken into account and discussions on the club forum followed and the decision was made to readdress the standards.
Eagerly anticipating the final draft I logged on to find myself a little set back as the times for my age group have gotten even harder. This destroyed all hope of my season’s targets and I’m beginning to regret saying anything now, at least with the first draft I had a chance at Bronze whereas now it looks like it’ll be a struggle just to get Club standard.
To achieve a Bronze Standard at 30 years old with North Cheshire Clarion
KILTON 8.75 TT
2010 STANDARDS 23:00 = Avg spd 22.826mph
2011 FIRST DRAFT 24:51 = Avg spd 21.1267mph
2011 NEW TARGET 23:32 = Avg spd 22.3087mph
10 MILE TT
2010 STANDARDS 26:50 = Avg spd 22.3602mph
2011 FIRST DRAFT 27:18 = Avg spd 21.978mph
2011 NEW TARGET 25.51= Avg spd 23.2108mph
25 Mile TT
2010 STANDARDS 1:12:30 = Avg spd 20.6896mph
2011 FIRST DRAFT 1:08:14 = Avg spd 21.9833mph
2011 NEW TARGET 1:07:06 = Avg spd 22.3546mph
I feel like I’ve spat my dummy out a bit on this but to put it all into perspective based on the 2010 results of the Seamons CC 25 TT, I would have to better the time of our Clubs highest finisher, in theory putting me as the best 25 TT rider in the club just to scrape Bronze!! Seems a bit far-fetched to me.