There are two types of time trial "Open" and "Club" events.
- Club events are informal, cheap to enter, typically mid-week and you don't need to enter in advance.
- Open events have more rules, are typically at the weekend and you have to enter a fortnight in advance.
Q: Can anyone enter a Time Trial?
A: Whatever type of time trial you are entering you must be a member of a club which is affiliated to Cycling Time Trials (CTT). Being a British Cycling or CTC member does not generally qualify you to ride time trials unless CTC District Association is affiliated to the CTT. The reason for this is that the insurance covering the event organiser for third party liability is linked to the CTT.
Q: When do I need to enter?
A: If you are entering an "Open" time trial the closing date by which the organiser must receive your entry is usually just under two weeks before the race. It is advisable to send your entry just a little bit earlier than this to allow for delays in the post. Entry must be on an official CTT Entry Form whch can be found on the CTT website here.
For "Club" events you can just turn up and race, provided of course you are a member of a CTT affiliated club.
Q: When will I find out if I'm in an "Open" event?
A: Once you've posted your entry you will have to wait until the week before the event whenyou will receive a start sheet giving full details of the course, prizes and your starting time. On rare occasions, usually on fast dual carriageway courses, an event may be over subscribed in which case rather than a start sheet the organiser will return your entry, this really is pretty rare. After the race you will receive a result sheet showing where you finished in the event and confirming your official time.
Q: What do I need to wear?
A: Clothing for time trials is generally a short sleeved racing vest and cycle racing shorts which cover the upper part of the thigh to just above the knee. Nowadays this is often a one-piece skinsuit, although sleeveless tri-suits are not allowed. The wearing of a helmet is recommended for all and is compulsory for all Juniors and Juveniles.
The subject of carrying advertising on race clothing in time trials is complicated. In "Club" events there are no restictions so you can wear replica pro kit. In "Open" events if you are a member of a sponsored club (or a professional) you may carry your sponsor's name(s) on your race clothing. Other than that nobody may carry advertising on their race clothing in an open time trial. The only exception to this is where the manufacturer puts a small logo on their products. Thus cycling shoes with the name of the manufacturer e.g. Sidi, Look, etc. may be worn but a racing vest or hat with the name of somebody who did not make it e.g. Raleigh, Campagnolo, your local cycle dealer etc., may not be worn unless they happen to sponsor your club.
More information about Time Trialing can be found here.