Unmangled link http://www.tritalk.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=87245
My race report, sorry in advance for waffling on .
SwimSlotting myself into the front of the pack in Pen 3, I still felt very calm. Why? What was wrong with me? Did I not care if I finished or did well? I shoved my lack of emotion to the back of my mind and looked around.
I enjoyed the pre race buzz, always have. I loved the encouraged banter between the pen 1 swimmers and us lesser mortals.
At 6am the horn sounded and off we went As Barley had promised in his tip, I had a clear run ahead of me. What no bashing, no fighting? I suddenly felt short changed so moved back into the pack and I got kicked in the nuts for my stupidity. I pulled back out, satisfied and fell into a rhythm, concentrating on my swimming form.
I found it all very boring, but in the quietness and solidarity I part solved a few of my current personal issues. What brought me to this bizarre point in my life, I wondered for the umpteenth time? I must remember to ask the other 1000 weirdo’s in rubber suits alongside me, I answered to myself through bubbles.I couldn’t believe how relaxed I felt as I came in front of the grandstand and headed up the ramp to T1. I had left my new Garmin in my car so I hadn’t a clue of my time. DK told me 1:15’ish, so I was delighted with my actual 1:12, a full 18 minutes quicker than my estimated.T1 came and went with no drama. The temptation to get naked in full public view was too powerful, a flawed weakness of mine, and therefore I wasted no energy in resisting.
I knew I’d miss my Garmin during this phase and that was to prove a founded fear. I hadn’t the first clue what speed, what heart rate, what effort, what distance I was covering and I had to concentrate on only what was happening in the moment.Several pirates passed me along the 112 miles, and I actually passed very few. I remember Siggy, DD, Zuvai, Pingu, Glady’s, Saffers, Hope, Cougie, FF and two who were stood chatting at their mile 80, must have been my 90 something. I stopped to ask if everything was OK. It wasn’t, obviously. I forgot to ask their names and thought one might have been Cake, but perhaps it might have been Spongecake and Capt. Jack. Apologies guys if I’ve got that all wrong.I passed Barley on an upflat and after exchanging smiles and words of encouragement, I naively thought I’d not see him again. He powered past me at 105 miles, cheerfully explaining that he had measured his efforts perfectly.I’ll mention the bike pirate feed station in my final summary.The wind was tough on me, Oxon ‘Hill’ was a disappointment, the ‘shortcut’ through the estate at 110 miles was horrible and my nuts took yet another knock on the rubber speed bump. Although I hate High5, I had trained on ISO High5 gels and then was dismayed to discover I couldn’t find any on the course. I had to rely on water/nuun tabs/soreen/rice krispie bars and fruit pastelles. That was my own stupid fault, and I regretted that I hadn’t trained with the High5 2:1 mix, leaving the gels out completely. I handed my bike to (must have been Petal?) and thanked her many times, perhaps more out of desperation than politeness.Time was 6:39 against an expected 7:15.T2 - Met Cat5. Dunked one handed into his vasaline tub, several times! Familiarity comes with friendship mate! He rushed off to change his shorts and I thought, ‘GO VT’d’, assuming that my sneaky gain in thirty seconds would stand me in good stead over the next 26.2 miles. I think he passed me before the exit from T2!
RunI thought I had cooked the bike and how right I was. I ran the first lap of the lake, but something was up. My legs felt OK, but my lazy, poorly considered nutrition strategy had fallen apart. I knew I still had the strength in my legs to run it, but I couldn’t take anything at the feed stations bar water and the odd bite of orange. Crisps, Jaffa Cakes, Gels, Coke, Bananas, all went unloved by me. I tried to push on and wanted to, but I knew I risked a flame out so I settled early for any finish.My overly sweaty tri-ponce visor was passed to Lee after lap 1. Thanks Lee. The support at the stadium was unbelievable and carried me for a few miles every lap. I also needed Cake’s never-ending encouragement on the outward trail section, and the pirate bunch at the entry back onto the lake.I hoped I smiled and encouraged at as many pirates who did the same for me. I remember so many faces and eventually put a name to most of them. Marvellous people all of you with particular mentions to Mr Zuvai, Cat, Ferret, Saffers, NV, Viking, Meldy, Nicko, Jaffa, BBP. So many, and I remember eye contacting with all of you and getting the same in return. Eventually, after suffering that horrible (to me) out and back trail for the third time, I gained my forth band and headed for home. I stopped shuffling to chat to Nicko. That chat was to last all the way to the finish chute. Suddenly, I was transformed into one of the Brownlees. I swooped, rolled and (swam?) along the chute. The cheering, laughing, silliness and pirate masses was something that will stay with me for a long time. I soaked up the hugs and handshakes. No-one flinched from my sweaty advances as I gathered in the smiley faces and kissed nearly every one. Sorry folks!Run time 5:29 against a target of anything sub 5:00. No point crying over that, but it’s something I’ll work at.Total Time 13:42 against a secretly hoped for sub 14.
Thanks Piratey peeps, sorry about the duff link. I think I managed to take the whole website down with it too. Oops.
SummaryThe pirate feed station on the bike course was something to witness. It was easily more motivating than I expected. The excitement, shouting, cheering, mexican wave, natural smiley faces and general pirateness extended much further than just the pirates. Everyone on the course felt the unbiased treatment, and that is why I’ll stay a pirate now. Genuine, lovely people, all giving up valuable time and paying to work the ship. And it rocks folks, truely. It runs deeper than merely tribal or dressing in a uniform of yellow and black lycra. To me, it appears to be a healthy mixture of very similar minded people, no-one dominating or stepping on toes. It might not always be like that, I don’t know, but for this weekend it was. I sat, drank, dined, chatted and laughed in amongst people that I have never met before, and I felt completely at ease and at home.
Great report VT'd
Good man, Davey. Funny report - and lovely meeting you.
+ 1 to that! Nice having a chat on Monday VT'd!!
VT'd.great report........I can now hear your lovely accent in my head evrytime I read your posts.........one of many new pirates who I was lucky to chat to last weekend
Top report VTd .. summed up excellently in the last paragraph
Lovely report VT'd, brought a tear to my eye. So nice to meet you after chatting on here about our blinking achilles which in the end gave neither of us any trouble. How's it now?
At various points on the course, I made all sorts of mental notes for what would be an incredibly amusing report, if I can be bothered to type it up....
VT'd - +1 for what the others have said. (pertickly Seren's comment about your lovely accent ). And your finish chute performance was most memorable.
Visit the official Triathlete's World page
Follow Triathlete's World on Twitter
Other Natmag-Rodale Sites
About Triathlete's World