## Why reverse order?::Individual time trial

### ::concepts

Severo::special    Would::trial    Start::style    August::handicap    Cyclists::pantani    Riding::mathmo

Why reverse order? I've asked this on the reference desk, but I feel it might be better here.... why do they start in reverse order? Is it as a kind of reward for having done well before? Yet while this could kind of hold true during a stage race, during say the world champs or the olympic games this is not the same because neither of those races are part of a larger race. Mathmo Talk 22:31, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

Interesting point this on how it came about that the best would start last (which is the reason, to provide a climax rather than have the best first then loads of people who can't beat the time following). In the World Champs, the reverse order is determined on the last year's results. I'm trying to find somewhere which gives a brief rundown on who decided it would be a good idea but haven't come up with anything yet... SeveroTC 23:22, 28 August 2007 (UTC)
In any time trial - riding, running, swimming, it doesn't matter - in the short term the target is always the competitor in front of you. You must catch him or her. The intermediate goal is to catch the next competitor. And so on. Thus one picks off the competitors in front - one at a time, one by one, until, if time permits, they're all gone and it's just you against the clock with the empty road (or water) ahead. In the process, one rides, runs and swims faster than one otherwise would. The long term goal is to beat one's previous PB. Except for the rear starter, one is also trying not to be caught. A variant on the pure time trial is the handicapped time trial, where the handicapper determines the handicap based on each competitor's most recent history. If the handicap is calculated correctly, then all the competitors approach the finish line at the same time which makes for an exciting finish. I've competed in a lot of time trials over the years and have achieved some of my fastest times in them. A time trial where the fastest started first, and the slowest last, would be completely pointless. It would have no excitement value for competitors or spectators. There would be nothing to aim for, no spur to riding, running or swimming faster. I for one would never bother to enter such an event. I might as well go for a run, ride or swim on my own.101.163.7.168 (talk) 17:31, 8 December 2012 (UTC)
I always was under the impression that the handicap was applied to a rider's actual elapsed time after the event, rather than by adjusting the start interval. Wschart (talk) 13:47, 10 April 2013 (UTC)

Talk:Individual time trial sections
Intro   Weasel Words    Why reverse order?    extra space    TT/Aero Position    Beryl Burton

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