750 m swim 50 mile bike 14 mile run
4:22:30 42nd overall
Swim and T1 14:37
Bike and T2 2:19:12
Had a great days racing yesterday at the Swashbuckler Triathlon. A beautifully set and thoughtfully organised event it was a pleasure to participate but also a lesson in how sometimes we forget what we already know and sometimes we know what we cannot forget.
The race was in the Bucklers hard tidal estuary. An early start and cold water meant it was going to be a reduced swim. The race briefing on Saturday and my experience that morning of just how cold it was at 7 a.m. when I went for my club swim had made it clear to me that keeping warm would be a priority on race day.
Still Saturday was spent 1. Buying a pair of goggles as I had forgotten mine. 2. Buying some water bottles (see1) 3. Buying some energy drink (see 1). 4. Getting my TT bike working since I took it out of storage on friday evening and had not ridden it since IMUK last year!!
4. Was a bit of an error, I had meant to get the TT bike out sooner but the endless rain had put me off. I had also lost the tape that marked my correct saddle height. Cue much fiddling about in the street behind my brothers house in southampton as I tried to best guess the saddle height.
Race day started early (04:00hrs) with a 30 min drive I was a bit leisurely and got to the race with 30 mins to go til I was supposed to be in the water. Cue much rushing around. I had decided to wear my woollen baselayer under my wet suit, and planned to put gloves on as well as my neoprene booties and a water/windproof top in T1. Told to hurry to get down to the start and realise my racenumber is in my bag back in my car and I had no socks (I always wear socks and when the air temp is 2 degrees C I definitely wear socks). I run back to the car grab race number, run back to transition and leave my stripey cotton socks and rush down to the slipway to get in the water. The run down across 200m wet cold grass left my feet numb and the 11.6 degrees C water felt warm by comparison.
I had enough time to get into the water find myself at the front, admire the sunrise and we are OFF! Flat out not sure where I am headed. Use people left and right to guide me. Works well, water not too cold settle in and decide to draft someone as they slowly pass me on my right side. the open water sessions with LFTri are working as let him drag me all the way back at what seems a good pace. Swim was something like 700 m but have no idea if I was fast or slow. Out the water and up the hill and into transition. Takes ages for me to put on booties, top, gloves etc. Watch people going out onto their bike in trisuits, still wet and into a very cold air at 20 mph. Think either they are insane or I am a bit of a southern softie.
Finally off on the bike. Feels Ok and I am not cold!! A beautiful course, sun, horses and ponies and cows, back ache, arm ache, sore undercarriage, look for a distraction. Some guy comes past with the second placed woman. Rather she comes past with him attached like a remora fish so I start giving him some verbals! Helps me forget my back pain no end. I keep hopping past the girl and her escort . Eventually the remora gets cross and starts threatening me with violence but shows no sign of getting out of the draft! Finally I decide to press on and drop the pair! Second lap was a bit better and finally start catching a few riders. This was nothing like last year when it was rare for any bike to come past me! In the first lap I as taken over by a good 10 bikes. Still I knew I am behind on training so just confirms what I thought.
The run was perfect (conditions) but again my lack of volume left me one paced (slow) still the journey of two laps was great and in spite of dropping about 10 places in the last 2 miles I was happy to get the job done. And a first for a long time.. my family and my brother's were there to see me finish.
So I need to bike more run more and get my race prep sorted! 5 weeks to HIMUK, better get the run volume sorted or IMCH is going to be another long day!