HEVER CASTLE EVENING TRIATHLON
So it’s not the Worlds or the European Medals we have some to expect from our Club these days, but we all like a win for the club!
Simon Baldwin Reports:
In weather conditions that were by far the most severe I have raced in it was still amazing 100 competitors were present for the sprint race ahead.
After falling down the muddy bank to the swim start we listened to the Race Director’s amusing notes to the treacherous course ahead as he confirmed the water was probably the safest place, although watching lightening hitting the side of the Lake I was not so sure! Before I could recall my very poor science knowledge as to whether swimming in a rubber suit would make the slightest difference it was time for the off!
Many competitors questioned the swim length to the Race director who confirmed it was 375M to the first turn but we noted it was not a straight line with a different exit coming back! With the usual affair of a few fast swimmers making a breakaway I clung on for to the top 10 in a bunch and stayed there, it was clearly my best swim for time as I got out in the top 8 but still well over 2 minutes down on the leader, With a time of over 15 min it was clearly also the longest 750M.
To the bike after the fumble of a shoe coming unclipped in transition and then dropping my chain in the first 100 metres and a few mutterings, it was head down and uphill for a while in the first 2 miles. On any other day this would be a scenic but challenging 20KM ride on country roads. However with extreme down pours in the hours before the course was more suited to a mountain bike, with washed down gravel and ankle deep water and speeds of over 35 mph in place it certainly got the attention. With passing a few riders but with one rider close behind for the first 7 km I began to strive for a little more effort and seemed to shake him but as I entered the water logged transition in 38 min I began to wonder what gap I may have and who was ahead.
The 5km run is all off road and starts with an immediate very steep uphill for about 600M where for whatever reason I felt stronger than normal. I was given an extra boost at the top where a marshal said I was leading. Having never found myself in such a position I found myself speeding up, however with ankle deep water on grass and mud it was far from the scenic beautiful run it should have been. With a heavy fall on one of the slippery wooden bridges that you cross and a further few mutterings it was head down for the last 1 km to the finish in a time of just over 21 min, which in such conditions was very pleasing. After the other waves finished it was confirmed that Redhill Triathlon had got the fastest time and overall win! Probably not likely to happen to me in a hurry again but I will be taking that memory to Ireland in September where I hope it will give me the needed boost and chance of qualifying for the 70.3 Half Iron man Word Championships for 2013.