On Saturday 14th May 2016 Clarice Chung of SSLL Racing Team attempted to set a new UCI Masters 35-39 Best Hour Performance, currently held by Adelia Reynek from South Africa who set a mark of 41.386km in 2015.
With the track booked from 7pm, Clarry started to warm up just as the velodrome heating was cranked up to the max to warm the air for the attempt (warm = fast). I was sweating just standing around taking photos, it must've been boiling on the rollers!
The bike...a Cervelo T4, built up with carefully considered components.
Warm up complete, Clarry made her final preparations and contemplated the 60 minutes that lay ahead. A crack team of sponsors, friends, a coach and a husband were behind the attempt, but the nature of the event means that once in the starting gate there is little more they can do.
And she's off! Clarry quickly settled into position and onto pace...
No visible cycle computers are allowed on track bikes, so the only feedback available is whatever a single support team member can shout at you as you fly past at 42kph. Usually this is a simple lap time, to a tenth of a second, to aid pace judgement. As the chart below shows, it seems to have worked - rock steady pacing throughout!
Two very different types of (equally valuable) support - stopwatches and laptops on the left vs friends, family and a brass band on the right!
The bell rings for the last lap - teeth are being bared now, but you have to look closely to tell. Form still rock solid.
It's all over...Clarry smashed the previous mark by nearly a kilometre to set a new world best of 42.116km. It takes a while for the pain of the effort to subside, but then a smile appears!
Congratulations Clarry! A phenomenal effort, executed perfectly.