New Forest Sprint Tri
Graham S, Ann & Graham P were all at at this one. Here is Graham S’ race report.
Myself & Coach 2 had to get up at stupid o’clock, i.e. 3:50am, because Richard & Jo, the Race Organisers, wanted Nikki on Registration for 5am. The only good thing about this was that mine was the first bike into transition so I picked the best spot. Once transition was set up I headed off for a little warm up & did my usual drills. I then found a quiet corner just to contemplate what was about to happen. This race involves a split transition so I left to headed off for the 15-20mins walk to the lake & on the way to the lake Scott & Di (probably the two best coaches in the country) went past me on their bikes. It was nice to see them out again.
I started setting up at the swim transition, only to put my goggles on my head when the strap broke. Panic then set it – have I got time to get all the way back to the car? No. I asked around but no-one had any spares with them (being in a split transition I just didn’t have my spare one(s) which I usually do with Coach 2, but she was back at the T1 on marshalling duty. OK. I just accepted that I would swim without any goggles so this was a first for me in a race. It was on a 400mtr(ish) swim so I entered the water early just to try & get used to swimming without goggles. The countdown started & oops, I went on “2” as I wanted to try to get every advantage I could think of without my goggles on. Once I had gotten my head around this, it wasn’t too bad.
I exited the swim, wetsuit off & into the transition bag, a spare pair of run shoes on then exited the swim transition & legged it to T1. I had a few people to chase along the lane but entered T1 & collected my trusted steed & off I went on a one lap 20 mile bike ride. I overtook someone just by the mount line then just got on with the job in hand. After about 10mins of riding I managed to catch & overtake another guy & then it was a fairly lonely ride back to T2. Where were all of the good riders? Why hadn’t they caught & passed me?
Into T2 for a rapid transition & headed off onto the 5K out & back run. This was a hilly/off-road/tarmacked run course. I got to one of the marshals at about a quarter of the way on the run & he told me “Graham, you are in the lead”. Now I never talk while I am racing but I couldn’t resist responding “you are a laugh” & he said “no, it’s true”. Well. Let’s get going then, not that I wasn’t trying anyway. However, my bubble got well & truly busted within 200mtrs of being told the good news when some speedy guy with his racing flats on came flying past me & I had no chance of hanging onto him. I reached the turnaround point & thought to myself “I’ve got to work out if I can hang on to second place” by seeing who was coming up the hill as I was heading down it. I had a reasonable gap but by now I was running very scared & worried. But I eventually made it to the finish line hanging onto second place. Job done.
My splits are as follows:
Swim – 6:05
T-run – 6:47
Bike – 57:23
Run – 21:06
Total time – 1:31:22
I came 2nd overall (out of 63) & 1st in my age group