In homage to my buddy Andy Wood, let’s start with an apology. Sorry for no blogs since the last race two weeks ago.
This weekend was the Reading Olympic Tri. A warm up event to the next ‘A’ race being the Half Ironman at Hever Castle at the end of the month (29th Sept).
Training for the build up for the Reading tri was good. Mark doing his magic again. After my holiday I was popped and Mark expected this and set me an easy week followed by a hard(ish) week so this weekend I was raring to go.
We stayed in a hotel overnight, which turned out to be the actual venue for the event, so it was literally on our doorstep.
The swim was OK, I swum really well, carving through the field like a dolphin (well it felt like it) but at the end of the first lap I followed a couple of others to the far buoy, which turned out to be the buoy for the exit. As I had another lap to go I should have gone to a different buoy. I think I lost at least a minute here or maybe two mins? STUPID!
Swim went well thereafter, a good pace and good sighting etc – swim time of 29 mins 38 secs.
Transition was OK. Quite slow at 1 mins 55 secs but that was OK. I don’t practise transitions so no reason why I should be fast at them.
The bike was OK – two laps of a 20K course (turned out it was 2 laps of a 22K course). First lap was OK. I felt slow on it and sluggish but I wanted the bike to be under 90 mins and completing the first lap in 43 mins meant I was on target for that time. I worked harder on lap 2. I was in the big ring more and pushed it where I could. Unfortunately there was an accident and we all had to stop and wait for a minute. Others were held up for longer but the police let us continue after I had only been there a minute. This meant there were a lot of us all together as we rode of, probably 20 or 30 of us all riding together.
Lap 2 of the bike was good, I pushed more and right to the end and I did lap 2 in 41.56, so a minute faster even though I was held up for a minute. Total bike time 1hr 25 mins.
During the bike I ate one and a half Torq bars – a bite every 20 mins and 750ml of energy drink.
T2 was again slow 2 mins 28 secs, mainly due to putting socks on to a) warm up my feet and b) avoid any blisters on the run.
On to the run – which was 6 laps – 90% of it on uneven grass running around the lake. The first few laps I felt good, really good and consistent.
Lap 1 – 9.1
Lap 2 – 9.26
Lap 3 – 9.42
I took a gel towards the end of lap 3 and lap 4 was 9.49. Lap 5 it started to get tough to keep the pace. I slowed to 10.35 for lap 5 but the joy of being on the last lap meant I did that in 9.35. So a total run time of 57 mins 46 secs. Not bad for a 10K off of an Olympic distance race. Looking at the Garmin it shows total distance of 10.87K so almost 11K for that time rather than 10K. Even better.
So a total of time of 2 hrs 57 mins 15 secs. I am happy with that, slow transitions, mucking up the swim on lap 1 and getting held up on the bike (not complaining about that) meant the pace meant an under 2 hrs 55 mins IN THEORY.
What is weird is I do not get any faster for shorter distance races. A half ironman I am around 6 hours (5.57 in Marlow and 6.05 for Vachery) for an Olympic I am half that time at 2.57) and for a sprint I am half again? So my times are predictable. 1hr 30 mins, 3 hrs, 6 hrs for Sprint, Olympic and Half.
The usual thanks for the support of my wife but also big thanks to Pete Greenham. Unable to compete due to injury he came to watch and I heard him bellowing my name every time I was near the hotel grounds. With Sam cheering me on at each lap of the run I had one of the best support teams there.
Thanks for reading.