[NEW! Now you can ride a version of this Team Time Trial profile in Jennifer’s virtual class video posted below. Or simply watch to get tips on how to cue this ride.]
The team time trial for the 2019 Tour de France is similar to team time trial profiles we’ve published before with a few small changes for slightly different terrain. Keep this in mind for every new edition of stage races like the Tour de France, the Vuelta a Espana, or the Giro d’Italia. You can take profiles you’ve used in past years, alter them slightly for different terrain, or sprinkle in some different colorful descriptions of the new towns, but use much of the same music and coaching cues as before. Or, change the French music to Spanish or Italian songs for a similar stage in the Vuelta or Giro. The team strategy remains the same; the description of effort is the same as well. Unless they are super serious cyclists (fairly rare in our cycling classes), your participants won’t know if the terrain isn’t exactly like that stage. Or, you can just tell them you used a little artistic license.
You can use these incredible and exciting stages any time of the year to add variety and challenge to your classes; you don’t have to wait for the Tour de France! I suggest doing it once a quarter and switching up the stage race you represent. First the Tour de France, then the Vuelta a Espana, and finally the Giro d’Italia*. (Note: The TTT is not offered every year in each race, but your riders will probably not know that. The last time the Giro had a TTT was in 2015.)
What makes the TTT so interesting and fast is the aerodynamics of the pace line. If you are a science geek and want to know more about the aerodynamic efficiencies of a 9-rider pace line, check out this study. It will add some fun trivia to your profile, especially if you have fellow geek cyclists in your classes!
The 2019 Team Time Trial, Stage 2, Brussels
The team time trial was the second stage of the 2019 Tour de France. This early in the Tour, spectators will likely witness the first surprises of the Tour de France—in this case, a new leader. Unless the sprinter, who will have most likely taken the lead the previous day, is part of a team of time trial specialists, we will see a new team rise to the lead. The wide streets of Brussels provide the ideal route for an impressive and fast team effort, with a few turns and a series of false flats that will truly test riders’ technical skills. The first riders to make it to the home stretch will also be the first to enjoy a stunning view of the Atomium, an impressive landmark building in the shape of an iron crystal molecule magnified 165 billion times that was built for the Brussels World’s Fair in 1958.
I’ve posted TTT profiles on ICA in the past. This one is from the first year of ICA (2011) and is from the Tour de France. Then I did this one from the 2012 Vuelta a Espana with primarily Spanish music.
This OCD post (Obsessed with Cycling Drills) describes how to simulate a pace line in your cycling classes.
Download the PDF and the Spotify playlist for this TTT version below, plus another playlist and Express Profile by Jennifer.