Why the 10 record is tumbling

We investigate why the 10-mile time trial competition record has come down by so much in recent years. From aerodynamics and equipment to training. What has made the difference?

Five mile checkpoint, British National 10-mile Time Trial 2011

In tomorrow’s magazine (September 22 issue) we take a look at the enormous chunks that have recently been taken out of the 10-mile time trial competition record compared to the tiny nibbles of earlier years.

We talk to Chris Boardman, Dr Auriel Forrester of www.scientific-coaching.com and Dr Xavier Disley of AeroCoach.

Unfortunately some of the facts and figures went awry in a final rewrite on press day. Here’s how those facts should have read:

Colin Sturgess broke the national competition record for 10 miles in 1988 with the first sub-19-minute 10. He set his time of 18.48 in an open event (not the National 10).

In the four years since 2012 the record has come down by one minute 10 seconds.

We hope these errors don’t spoil your enjoyment of the article. Read it in full in tomorrow’s magazine.

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Simon Smythe is Cycling Weekly's senior tech writer and has been in various roles at CW since 2003. His first job was as a sub editor following an MA in online journalism.


In his cycling career Simon has mostly focused on time trialling with a national medal, a few open wins and his club's 30-mile record in his palmares. These days he spends a bit more time testing road bikes, or on a tandem doing the school run with his younger son.


What's in the stable? There's a Colnago Master Olympic, a Hotta TT700, an ex-Castorama lo-pro that was ridden in the 1993 Tour de France, a Pinarello Montello, an Independent Fabrication Club Racer, a Mercian Classic fixed winter bike and a renovated Roberts with a modern Campag groupset.


And the vital statistics:


Age: 53
Height: 178cm

Weight: 69kg