Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Rubicon 70.3 triathlon

The last time I did a middle distance triathlon was in my build up to my Ironman back in 2010. Since then, my triathlon training has stepped up significantly and I felt that, certainly this season, I'd done sufficient endurance training to warrant doing a 70.3. I thought I'd give the Rubicon Tri in Yorkshire a go, a relativity new event and were there was some good competition in the form of professional Joe Skipper (2nd in UK ironman 2014).

The swim followed the river Ure downstream 1700m, before doubling back upstream for the final 200m. I found I was able to get on the feet of other swimmers which helped pull me along and maintain a relatively good pace. Despite being my weakest discipline, I was pleasantly surprised by my swim, finishing 8th and only 2 minutes down on first.

The bike was on a fast 2-lap course, mostly going up and down A roads, and with only little wind. After 5 miles on the bike, a group of 4 of us was strung over 50m on the road (to avoid the drafting) and we periodically took it in turns to take lead and help maintain a reasonable speed. Up ahead a couple of minutes was Joe Skipper and one other, whom I later found out was part of a relay. I managed to maintain a consistent pace, averaging about 24.5mph for the 51 mile course, and finished the bike feeling relatively ok and about 4-5 minutes off the 

I started the run with a skip in my step with a 5:17 mile followed by a 5:13 mile. This was probably not the wisest idea to start with and I paid for that as I detonated at about 9 miles....but I felt I needed to give it everything on the run to have any chance of reeling in the leaders. At about 6 miles I realised the deficit on first place was too large, but I was comfortably in second. In the end I finished 2nd in 3:51, 3 minutes behind first. I have lots to learn here across pacing, race nutrition (I only had one gel and half an energy bar during the whole race, which is probably not enough) and specific training sessions. That'll be it for triathlon for 2014. I'll give the Ballbuster Duathlon a crack in November, and then consider my 2015 race plan sometime early next year.

Myself, Joe Skipper, Sam Village