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Triathlon Training & Races - Matt's Blog
Sharing my experiences in training, racing and learning the 'science' of progressing in Triathlon - from total novice to top-ten finisher (and hopefully beyond!). Stop by to listen to what I have to say, but don't forget, the whole point of web 2.0 is interaction, so don't be afraid or too shy to leave your own thoughts!

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Schoolboy Error!

prhimby prhimDec 17th 2009
Schoolboy Error!
Please tell me I'm not the only person ever to have done this!

Having performed reasonably well in my first ever duathlon (Castle Coombe, 1hr dead) I decided a quick and reasonably cheap way to find a little time on the bike was a new set of lighter wheels.


Opted for the Campagnolo Zondas - partly because I think they look really cool (I know, bad criteria!) and partly because they had good write ups and commentary on value for money (didn't want to spend more than £400).

All good.

Except that when they arrived, I couldn't transfer the cassette off the old wheels to the new ones (turns out old wheels are Miche, with a Miche-specific cassette). Bad news, but not terrible - at least I can keep old wheels 'complete' for training.

So new cassette was duly ordered by the local bike shop - Campag Veloce 9 speed (old school, but 9 speed does me fine). After two long weeks, new cassette turns up and is fitted. Wonderful.

Take the bike out at the weekend and on the flats, I can definitely feel the difference, really motoring along, wheels feel great. Get to my first proper hill, however, (Hackpen Hill in Wiltshire, for anyone that knows it) and my God, my legs feel like they've got no strength and I'm down to the granny gear immediately.

Not Good.

The same pattern continues for the whole rest of the ride. Bike feels wonderful on the flats (even getting down onto the drops, which I don't normally do) but a bitch on the hills.

Confused I arrive home after nearly two hours and 50 km. I'm sat there eyeing-up the old and new rear wheels. And then it hits me. There's a definite difference.

Old cassette - 13 teeth on smallest cog, 26 on largest.

New Campag cassette - 13 teeth on smallest, 23 on largest.

Where's my granny ring gone?!?! :-S

Talk about a schoolboy error. I trusted to bike shop to just order a like-for-like cassette (they supplied the bike, after all), but instead I've got a close-ratio cassette minus my 'rescue' 26-tooth ring.

Right now, can't be bothered to change it. Will just have to build stronger legs!


Anyway, made me chuckle, maybe it will you too.
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