Can you buy speed?
If your name’s Jarvis Cocker and you sing that you’re ‘Sorted For E’s and Whizz’ then… yes…. yes, you can.
But, if your looking for speed and not a criminal conviction for class-A narcotics, speed can be bought legally. A race bike will be faster than a BMX. A pair of trainers will be faster than welly boots. Everything you wear or use can help you go faster.
Take bikes. Every bike is different. Even if you just look at race bikes you still get bikes which are better for climbing, better for sprinting, better for comfort or better for keeping your bum dry when it’s wet. (I may have made that last catergory up, but, if it’s not a thing then Specialised or Trek should definitely make it happen. Who wants to go faster when it’s raining? You just want a dry bum!).
The Stirling Duathlon was our chance to test whether different bikes could make a difference when racing. I was using my TT bike and Iain was using an aero bike, which is the technical name for a smaller less comfy bike sold to big men on the basis they’re sore back will make them think they’re cycling harder.
A TT bike on the other hand is the technical name for a smaller less comfy bike sold to big men on the basis they’re sore back will make them think they’re cycling harder but, and this this crucial bit, they also look cooler than a normal bike because you’ve got handlebars shaped like a unicorn.
The race was on. Well, I say on, but for five minutes I kept pace with Iain before deciding to try an early break to see if he could keep up or if he’d fall away.
After five minutes I looked back and he was nowhere to be seen.
I then spent the rest of bike leg trying to go as fast as I could to make sure he didn’t catch me on the line.
Now some people (Iain) might say that I’d merely bought my speed by buying a different (faster and cooler looking) bike. But I like to think I got my speed the old fashioned way – no, not in a Lance Armstrong blood bag delivered by motorcycle courier – but through hard word, dedication, sheer grit and effective training.
Also, I had a pointy aero helmet. And it looked really, really cool. 🙂