By Michael Bello
Published 11/28/2023; Updated 11/28/2023

For the ninth week of the NCC Zwift Hill Climb/Time Trial Series, we rode in Watopia.

This week, our challenge was the Epic KOM.  This 5.8 mile mountain took us up 1,361 feet.

Jonathan and Zinj battled for the top spot today. Jonathan prevailed by one second. This was no doubt aided by the fact that Jonathan showed up on time, while Zinj arrived late for the ride. Andy finished third, 28 seconds behind Zinj.

Henry II was intent on setting a “new, but not necessarily better FTP” on today’s climb. From the numbers I saw on Strava, it was a very respectable FTP number, which earned him forth place.

Joe rode solo again today. He shattered his previous best on the Epic KOM by 4 minutes and 27 seconds! Steve finished a spot behind Joe to just miss the wide angle podium.

I was doing another workout today, but I picked the perfect route so that my six minute threshold repeats would take place on the hill. I completed the fifth and final set as I crested the mountain. I knew I was not going to win, but I thought I had a chance not to finish last. Unfortunately, Henry III rode his climb at a steady pace. Despite averaging more watts than Henry III, he still finished ahead of me thanks to weighing virtually nothing.

In the overall series, Jonathan extends his top position. Melissa has fallen behind Henry III. Will she ever return to our virtual hill climbs and time trials? Tied for eighth are our two Leominster competitors, Tim and Steve.

Here are today’s results:

1. O’Keeffe, Jonathan; Time: 0:24:47; 14.2 mph; 7 points
2. Guo, Zinj; Time: 0:24:48; 14.1 mph; 6 points
3. MacDonald, Andy; Time: 0:25:16; 13.9 mph; 5 points
4. van den Broek, Henry; Time: 0:26:34; 13.2 mph; 4 points
5. Laviolette, Joe; Time: 0:29:00*; 12.1 mph; 3 points
6. Wysk, Steve; Time: 0:32:04; 10.9 mph; 2 points
7. Wheaton, Henry; Time: 0:32:33; 10.8 mph; 1 points
8. Bello, Michael; Time: 0:33:48; 10.4 mph; 1 points

*Strava PR

Here are the series standings:

1. O’Keeffe, Jonathan; Event(s) 9; Points: 50
2. Guo, Zinj; Event(s) 8; Points: 43
3. MacDonald, Andy; Event(s) 7; Points: 40
4. van den Broek, Henry; Event(s) 4; Points: 17
5. Wheaton, Henry; Event(s) 7; Points: 14
6. Warwick, Melissa; Event(s) 3; Points: 12
7. Laviolette, Joe; Event(s) 3; Points: 11
8. Wysk, Steve; Event(s) 4; Points: 10
8. Downey, Tim; Event(s) 3; Points: 10
10. Bello, Michael; Event(s) 9; Points: 9
11. Yarosh, Scott; Event(s) 1; Points: 8

Next week, we will do a four lap time trial of the Volcano Circuit in Watopia.

Participants in the Hill Climb/TT series may ride any time during the day or participate in the group ride version at 6:00 PM. Please visit the NCC Zwift page for the series rules.

Here is the NCC Zwift schedule:

  • Tuesday 6:00 PM – Time Trial / Hill Climb
  • Wednesday 8:00 PM – Social Ride
  • Thursday Evenings – Road Race (times will vary between 5 PM and 7 PM EST)
  • Sat 9:00 AM – Social Ride

Join the NCC Club on Zwift or check Link My Ride on your mobile device for information on each ride.

To learn more about the NCC and Zwift rides, please visit our Zwift page.