Time trialling is a pursuit sport. Riders start at one minute intervals and ride a set course at their best possible speed. The immediate aim is to catch and overtake as many of the riders who started before you as you can and, off course to avoid being caught by those who are started behind you. The actual prize is to complete the course quicker than anyone else, but out on the course, the competition is stiff as you try to gauge your performance against other riders and it is only after the time-keeper has computed the results that you really know how you have ridden.

There 2 levels at which you can trial. Club events and open events.

Club events are informal and are part of the club calendar,  primarily for club members though riders from other clubs are welcome too. As a club member you can ride any of these without restriction and the points you gain go towards the Seabird and Stokes trophies which are presented annually. Club events are a great place to learn the ropes and build experience.

Open events are run under the auspices of CTT (Cycling Time Trials) which is the UK's time trial governing body. Anyone can pre-enter for these events by sending off an entry form and the nominal fee (usually £7:50). All the events are itemised in the Annual CTT Handbook and are organised and run by cycle clubs from all over the UK. With popular events the field may be oversubscribed in which case selection will normally be based on past performance and less able riders and novices may have to go on the reserve list or be refused.

Trials courses vary greatly and include such events as a 24 hour distance trials  and  '2 up' paired trials, but the norm is for 10, 25, 50 and 100 mile courses and kilometre courses too. The terrain will vary too with sporting courses that would suit any road race through to flat or 'fast' courses along dual carriageways.