I have rode with some very strong cyclists during my late started cycling venture @43 some 11 years ago. But today oh boy this was out of this world. 125 k TT with professional Triathlete Rasmus Svenningsson age 29 World Champion in age group 25-30 a few years ago at Kona since then a full time professional with 30 h training hours / week. Rasmus is extreme strong on the bike and did a sub 8 hour full IM distance on a training session alone last summer. The bike split was 4.06 with 43,9 kph av. and the swim was a couple of 100 meters too long. I would guess he is one of the absolute strongest TT cyclist for the full IM distance in the world right now. Yesterday we rode 80 k with a couple of hard 15 min intervals a 370 w for Rasmus and approx 340 w for me. He is 80 kg and i am 74 kg. They say that its hard to ride in hilly and windy Fuerteventura +35 kph. Yesterday we did a little over 38 on 80 k and today Rasmus was aiming for a full speed 125 TT in IM race pace @320 w approx with ambition to go + 40 kph. And this was direct after a har swim session also at IM pace 4000 m. My ambition was to stay on his wheel. After all i am 26 years older than Rasmus:-)
It was a wonderful fine and sunny day here in Fuerteventura around 18 degrees c, low wind as i understand is very rare here. But it is quite hilly almost all of the time up or down and we had over 1000 m of height today most of it on the way northbound out where we had the wind slightly in the tail which is also quite rare. Fantastic beautiful on the first 60-80 k very few cars and mostly nice paved roads in good quality but ohh so tough in the climbs with my single chainring 56 T with 28 back. Not ideal for biking here i can tell and when Rasmus pushes 400 w uphill i had to dig deep to stay on his wheel wiht a very low cadence. But so rewarding scenery "up there" with mile afte mile view and almost no cars. Dead fast descents and after 295 w just to stay on Rasmus wheel the first hour it was a little bit easier on the way down to the coastline. But on a long and quite steep climb i almost have to ask Rasmus to ease off a little bit i was on the limit there.
I did not have my best day, my legs was not in a good mood but boy did i fight. I shall not loose his wheel. Just aint gonna happen i decided. But my ambition to take the front disappeared after the over the limit climbs. On the last 40 k we hoped for a fast run on the motorway but it was so extreme slow and wind againt / from the side so i nearly had to let him go a couple of times. My pulse was low and i usually should be able to push a little bit more but the ride had taken its toll and now it was just glue myself to Rasmus wheel the last 20 k. With 15 to go i was happy because i felt i will make it. But then came an extrem bad road for 2 k with ashphalt like the paving on a bad belgian pave. Just push and not let go of the wheel was my mantra and with only a couple of hundred meters left of the bad road i was going to make it then my chain dropped in a big bump. So darn annoying. So close with only 10 k to go. Rasmus continued because he wanted to set a hard to beat course record. I stopped, put the chain back and the rode the last 10 k a little extra hard as "a revenge" on myself. Was a little irritated first so close to the end but then i was quite satisfied wiht the effort and performance i had achieved after all and was able to finish the alst 10 k alone in good power and speed and just lost a little over a minute with a quite long stop. Rasmus finished 40,7 over 125 k with an amazing average power a 330 w for 3 hours 4 minutes thats INSANE. Welcome you cyclist around the world to beat that! I finished 40,6 and i have to say i am quite satified with that, this was an extreme hard ride.
So great to be able and train with Rasmus he is an outstanding athlete. After our ride yesterday where he held over 300 watts for over 2 hours hed did a jog down 15 k a 3.45 / km tempo. I dont know what tempo your jog downs are:-)? It is truly out of this world. He has a VO2 max around 80 best 10 k run session is 30,50 and he trains approx 30 hours per week. I would not be surprised if he stands at the podium on the worlds largest IM events the next few years. And to be able to follow him for this session with so much uphill cycling was a great reward for me especially since i did not had this great feeling today. But tomorrow there will be very easy or even maybe a restday. Now i had a few beers and a glass of cava which i think it well deserved:-). On friday we are going full around the island +200 k and 6 hours but that ride will be in zone 2-3 otherwise i will die on this island.
Ride hard and safe!