Dear Mr. and Mrs. Time Trialist

12 Jun

Seriously, what are you doing wearing your aero helmets and shouting, “On your left.” on 7th East in Sandy during rush hour?

Before someone calls me an idiot I really believe that there is a time and place for an aero helmet. It will probably give you a little edge in a time trial and I’m sure its an advantage to use one during the bike leg of a triathlon. I’ve even done a few triathlons myself although, without the aid of an aero helmet or aero bars.

Tasha and I were out on our mountain bikes doing an easy spin down 7th east in Sandy this evening trying to work out the kinks from the Sundance race last night.

I was several bike lengths in front of Tasha spinning along in the massive bike lane, really, its as wide as a car lane. Why can’t every street have bike lanes like 7th east? Anyways, all of a sudden I hear, “On your left.” What? Whoosh, whoosh a couple of time trialists or triathletes go cruising by.

How did I know I they were time trialists or triathletes? The aero helmets they were sporting of course and the aero bars. My first thought was that maybe there was a race going on. Nope, it’s rush hour and we’re on 7th east and besides, they don’t have any grease paint numbers on their calves.

What are they doing wearing aero helmets? Why would anybody wear an aero helmet anytime other than during a time trial? Why do they need to say, “on your left”?

Maybe, just maybe, they are triathlon dorks. Silly me, I get it now. I should be cheering the use of aero helmets for any ride. I’m still not sure about the “on your left” with a 20 ft wide shoulder though.

17 Responses to “Dear Mr. and Mrs. Time Trialist”

  1. Grizzly Adam June 12, 2008 at 10:45 pm #

    You should have ran them down on your single speed. “On YOUR left.” Tri geeks might be the nerdiest of all bike nerds. I’m just sayin’.

  2. Scott Rosenbaum June 13, 2008 at 6:51 am #

    Okay the aero helmets are pretty dorky for rush hour. Wonder how much time those things save while sitting at a crossing?

    So what’s the problem with “On your left?” I hate it when you are out riding along, minding your own business when someone comes by without any warning, especially when riding a busy road (like during rush hour).

    My theory is that when it is busy, I try to be hyper aware, listening and watching for action from the left. When I bike comes by, there is typically no noise, so when I see them, I always have a bit of a jump.

    That’s just me.

  3. susancyclist June 13, 2008 at 7:12 am #

    I love the ones who are almost past you before they say anything. What’s the point then?

  4. brkeyes7 June 13, 2008 at 7:41 am #

    Scott-I’m all for announcing that I’m about to pass but I always thought “on your left” was reserved for a race. How about “hi” “hello” “howdy” “nice day for a ride” nice bike” OK, maybe not “howdy”. And is there a need to fly by at warp speed? I try to slow down and ride with whoever I’m passing for a minute and chat and then be on my way.

  5. KanyonKris June 13, 2008 at 7:47 am #

    They were late for a funeral.

    Perhaps the high price of gas has spawned a business for long distance couriers. “Your package from one of the valley to the other in less than an hour.”

    I just ordered an aero helmet for my next Clark’s TT attempt. I’m sure it will push me sub-13.

  6. ET June 13, 2008 at 7:47 am #

    Tri-geeks are from another planet. I mingle with them a couple times a year for a good laugh.

  7. mark June 13, 2008 at 10:14 am #

    I actually quite like “howdy.” It’s my standard greeting on the trail.

    You slow down and chat with people because you’re nice like that. The rest of us mean jerks, who use words like “howdy,” are out riding our road bikes because we have miserable lives and lack any other legal means to take out our aggression. “On your left” is a polite way of saying “I hate your guts.”

  8. k.c. June 13, 2008 at 11:44 am #

    I saw their cousin two nights ago TT’ing down university avenue just before dark with his light. He had his light on tucked up on his aero bars, and sporting the TT helmet. Why university avenue? With all those stop lights (and traffic) it can’t be a good TT route. And who does a TT in the dark?

  9. Brad Mullen June 13, 2008 at 5:23 pm #

    You should feel honored they said something to you. I didn’t know Roadie could speak! They sure as hell don’t know how to wave.

    Don’t ya just love cool dude racer guy that “races” on the roads during the week but he’s nowhere to be found at the races on the weekends. I’d pay to see you run them down on your SS.

  10. brkeyes7 June 13, 2008 at 7:20 pm #

    Mark-Howdy! I actually caught myself saying howdy 8 times today to riders but after each time I said it I immediately felt like a dork. Nothing wrong with spose.

  11. je June 14, 2008 at 6:55 am #

    I own an aero helmet.

    If I’m ever wearing when I am not in a TT, a triathlon or purposely trying to look like a dork, go ahead and slap me with a bike pump.

    As for ‘on your left’ … I say that occasionally too. Especially if I’m on a training ride and trying to maintain a pace. I don’t have time for a conversation if I’m locked in at a 22mph pace and the person/people I’m approaching are traveling at 16-18 mph. I’ll just try to be safe, announce I am passing them and get on my way.

  12. Rich June 14, 2008 at 7:14 am #

    At least they were riding their bikes… 🙂

  13. BotchedExperiment June 14, 2008 at 8:54 am #

    2 questions:
    How well do the TT helmets work when you’re stopped at a light?
    How well do the TT helmets work when you get hit by a car?

    I ride down 7th east from 75th south to 123rd south a couple times a week, and I have only made it through the light at 123rd ONCE, and that was on Wednesday of last week. Too bad too, because as I was crossing the intersection, what looked like a bent and broken 16 penny nail scewered my road bike tire. Even though the odds must be a zillion to one of having that happen, it’s not the first time for me. Once I was riding my mt bike on the road when a nail went all the way through my tire diagonally, but didn’t puncture the tube!

  14. brkeyes7 June 14, 2008 at 11:53 am #

    je-That makes sense, but if I was doing a TT training ride I probably wouldn’t be on 7th east maybe out in Draper or Herriman where I wouldn’t be bothered with all the lights.

    Rich-Good point.

  15. Daren June 14, 2008 at 1:08 pm #

    My 15 year old son Tanner had the same experience in Draper a few weeks ago riding his MTB home from Corner Canyon on 13th East. Two guys go by with a “on your left” on their TT bikes. However, Tanner got his revenge on the short hill up to 123rd. He blew by them on the MTB with a “on your left” and then rode away from them. That’s my boy.

  16. je June 14, 2008 at 2:09 pm #

    no kidding. if I’m training for a TT or Tri, I drive out to Herriman, Redwood Road into Utah County or I hit the frontage road out by Saltair.

    I dunno, maybe these folks were on their way to Herriman or just returning, but 7th East is barely passable for a road ‘training’ ride during rush hour. I like to ride it on my way to suncrest or something like that, but never as a tempo ride.

    Speaking of which, I have a tri in Cache Valley next week so I better go and enjoy Saratoga Springs and Elberta a little bit next week. I’ll leave the helmet and disc wheel at home, though.

  17. kenny June 16, 2008 at 1:03 pm #

    It reminds me of an episode of “Malcome in the Middle” when his dad was into speed walking with a skin suit and a tt helmit. funny stuff.

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