Monday, 20 August 2012

England Standard Distance Championships

I am now the 20-24 English Standard Distance Champion! :D Approached this race hoping to have a podium finish, so I was delighted to be stood on the top at the end of a hot race in the middle of a tiring weekend! Matt and I got the train to Milton Keynes on Saturday, where we stayed overnight ready for a very early start (4am for Matt's 7am and my 7.30am start). We cycled from the hotel to the race venue at 5am on Sunday morning, 15km to the venue, a good warm up and one puncture later we arrived. 

The swim was a bendy 1500m, when we arrived, it was wetsuit optional, bordering on 21 degrees celcius, however 30minutes before race start, they announced it was wetsuit compulsory. The swim was weedy, getting caught round our legs and in our goggles.  I exited the water in 4th place. T1 went well, helmet on, switched the garmin on ready for the run, grabbed the bike and left. The bike course was great, rolling and undulating, enough rolls to keep those on the TT bikes working and gaps to be decreased! I was back on Billie, my Cannondale CAAD8, we put in a good effort against the snazzy TT bikes and aero helmets that kept whizzing past, always a given, but I guess you have to grin and bear it, and realise that a solid bike on a road bike will benefit more in elite draft legal racing. The sun was coming out, expected to reach 29 degrees celcius by midday. Better get a move on!

The run was a three lap course around the lake we swum in, 6 water stations each of them much appreciated by every athlete. Into the finishing straight, burnt from the sun, wet from the drinks and hearing the beep as the chip on your ankle flies over the line. A finishing medal, banana and drink, time to cool off and sit down. We sat in the sun for an hour or two, soaking up the atmosphere and supporting the athletes still coming in. Presentation started midday, prizes for each age category and overall men and women.

Congratulatoins to Chantal Cummings who came 2nd, &  Emma Stevens in 3rd.
 I recieved a large medal for winning the age cat, and a silver plate, wine and various energy gels and bars for overall 5th woman. Matt led the swim, and exited T1 first, however a broken valve on his back wheel meant he rode the 40km on 40PSI (instead of 140PSI to give you an idea!! - meaning that any power put in was not being returned by the bike resulting in a loss of 10-15minutes over a course of that length), essentially putting an end to his hopes of the podium. We have both however been accepted to race in London Elites, so the focus of training has now turned to that. 

Monday, 6 August 2012

Trowbridge Triathlon

4 days after the last race (see Mid-Week Duathlon) and back for more! Another small local triathlon, at Trowbridge leisure centre, a sprint distance triathlon with some variations....400m pool swim, 26.5km bike followed by a cross country 5km run!

Feet out the shoes! Coming into T2...

Matt, Dad and I had all entered, though Dad had been living life up at the Olympics the night before, witnessing three British golds in the athletics stadium! So while he was a bit tired he decided to withdraw (no symapthy I would have withdrawn for those Olympic tickets! Matt had a good race, 3rd fastest swim, fastest run split but after a few hundred km racked up on the bike that week, had a slightly tiring bike ride that day. As Matt races elite too, in the local races the most important bits are to be putting in the fast swim and run splits, as elite racing with be draft legal on the bike.

The Scott and I exiting T1...

I had a good swim, 5.15 which is 10seconds off from a couple of months ago which is always good! Strong bike ride with once again the gorgeous Scott loaned from The Triathlon Shop, but a poor run, 20.10 for 5km, pushed hard on the bike though, and paid for it when I got off...! It was all good enough to grab first place though, first in the 20-24 age catergory, and first female overall by just over a 2.30min margin!

Trowbridge is a great race, really low key and friendly, the longer bike course obviously suits it slightly more to the cyclists, but its also a great race for the novices. One for those who are happy on bikes other than road, there were many mountain, upright and other bikes round the course. The race was organised by DB Max, who are well known for their chip timing and prompt organisation and running of races on the day. Check out their website to see their upcoming events, results and more info about the company.

My cool trophies! 

Here is a link to some more photos taken by a photographer on the day...

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Mid-Week Duathlon

The Bath Amphibians Triathlon Club have been putting on a series of 5 duathlons this summer held at Castle Coombe car racing track. Tonight was the fourth race of the series, consisting of a 2-10-2mile run-bike-run. Castle Coombe is a very popular venue for runners, cyclists and triathletes in the South West, known for it's flat circuit, large transition area but also it's open setting which makes the wind very noticeable and at times very blustery!

After a long day at work, myself and another Triathlon Shop Felt team member John Wood, headed down to the venue with our bikes and kit to see what we could do. The race started at 7, so after registration, transition set up and a warm up we set off. It was quite windy, black ominous clouds were fast approaching motivating every athlete to run fast and pedal faster.

On the bike! 

Had a good race, fairly pleased with my results ( for a training race it was good, very enjoyable and a friendly atmosphere catching up with lots of people :) Next training race for me is Trowbridge sprint triathlon, a small local race which will give me some more experiences across the disciplines and make sure that race spark is still there! See you on Sunday!