Race Reports

The Marshman middle distance tri race report

Realizing I'll need to get up at 3.00am to get to Lydd for the 5.00am registration was a schock.

Getting there at 5.30am would have been enough. Started at 7.00am in the first swim wave.


Only 200 competitors overall in 3 waves. Thought I started at the very back, still got swum over twice. Not nice.


When I registered for this one last year had to give my 1000m pool time,

I was a better swimmer then but just started out with cycling. They put me into the first wave.


I got slower in the pool since then, because I cycle instead.

Everybody dashed off from the start as expected, there were some under 30 minutes times.


Couldn't stay on good feet, just swum on my own. Hence the slow time, 36.15. It was still a comfortable, pleasant swim.


I need some work on transitions, for sure. This was my first tri,  6.15 and 6.52 still seems very slow.

I felt soooo organised. The only glitch was I forgot to remove the rain coat from my cycling top,

run back when realized it was bouncing too much. 

There really wasn't too much distance to cover, it was all me.

Heavy rain was the forecast but it was dry and ideal conditions if a bit windy. I guess it's the location.


Bike was uneventful and pancake flat. There were only signs if the route went off the main road, I felt bad because of it several times but didn't go astray.


3.32 is actually a good time for me, I'm so weak on the bike. Can't even put my bottle back without stopping and putting the feet actually down though I'm practicing this a lot. Fast course, ideal for tri bars, which I've got but can't use, it feels so unsafe for me. It still holds one of my bottle, very useful, see above.


The run was on a nice course, very bad signage here. I think it was a problem even last year, I can't understand how could they not fix this. The event is in it's third year, btw. Actually run through two marshalls busy talking, then realized a minute later I've gone astray, turned back, asked them which way, also why didn't they told me earlier.


They told me they haven't thought I was in the race. Huhhh.

2.29 was what I expected. 6.50.44 overall, not dead last but very close.


I've only had two short runs in the last month, and around 20 runs overall in this year. This included a half, a 20miler and a full, the rest were short runs/bricks. You can't run much better than you've trained for.


Last year I've run much more, this year I've injured my knee several times from cycling with too low cadence. I've sorted this out a little bit late (last month) for my IM in July, let's hope not too late...


Had a good stretch and a dip afterwards in the lake (icebath), I believe this is why I feel so well today. Muscle soreness only in biceps, well, I think I must be a bit outstretched on my 56" bike.


Tried out planned  IM nutrition, ate solids and generally more on the bike than would have been needed for the half. Seemed OK.


All in all a reasonable event , very fast course with some bad signage.

Lack of hills is good if you're after a PB, not so if you're in training for a hilly IM. 

We hadn't got a number to call in case of mechanical problems.

There were marshalls on mopeds and  marshalls at roundabouts.

Registration, transition, start and finish went smoothly.


Kate Walch 

Royal Wedding Day Aquathlon


Thorpe Park Aquathlon 750m swim 5km run easy I thought the hardest thing is getting up at 05:00 or so I thought.


Race brief done and in the water for a 07:40 start, The water was warmish so I have a quick swim sprint to remind me why I am here. Back to the start for a deep water start whistle goes and it's a very civilised affair no kicks or punches. this is not open water swimming.. after about 100m it feels like the wheels are about to come off "What the hell" I thought "this isn't right" is it the wetsuit? I have only warn it twice!!! 400m suddenly everything is fine, that was weird, now to catch the lead pack that I foolishly let get away. 13:26 out of the water in 7th place


Next panic I could not get the wetsuit off very strange, then to top it off I slipped over not quite to Pete Harris's standard but still both feet up in the air. I take the opportunity and get the rest of the suit off honest I meant to do it like that.


I feel 5 years old again. I cant tie my shoe laces, I am breathing heavy and trying to slow my heart rate down but cant get the laces done, I cursed the decision not to wear the elastic laced trainers, cobbled a knot together and set off on the run a just over a minute later.


O my god what happened to my lungs!!!! Unlike going out on the bike where you get a chance to get a breath straight out on the run you don't, I'm currently 7th and want it to stay that way.


Dam lace is undone. stop tie it up better this time.. Dam lace is undone. stop tie it up and get passed. ##@# undone again are you kidding me, its knotted now.


At the run turn around just got passed like I was standing still and I am in 9th. there is a guy behind me I can hear him, I'm doing a 07:30 pace but he is still there and I cant see the finish line, he passes me so I tuck in behind him, he's not getting away, there's the finish should I go now and risk him beating me on a return sprint? Yep go for it, 3 long strides and he's behind a few more to hold him off a few more and he has given up and I am over the line 23:15.


Steve Mac: 37:57 and a 10th place

Mark Jordan and his Tinman Challenge


Let me start by thanking everyone who gave so generously of their time and effort to come out on the rides, gave me encouragement and, of course, contributed to the £1,600 (and counting) that we have raised so far for the Multiple Sclerosis Society.  While I am hesitant to name individual people, I really do have to mention a few:


     Paul Wills, who managed to use his 'magic hands' to keep my body functioning and, believe me, that was no mean feat;

     Steve Mac' who, as ever, was his usual ebullient self;

    Nick Harding, for organising the use of the Hurstpierpoint College swimming pool and for acting as the lifeguard during the swims;

     my children, who can shout louder and longer than any other supporters, and, of course,

     my wife, Lizzie, who not only had to put up with a somewhat distracted husband for months but was a real inspiration throughout.


You may recall that the challenge involved a 4km swim on Friday 8th  April, a 100 mile bike ride on Saturday 9th   and the Brighton Marathon on 10th.  That was followed by another 4km swim on Friday 15th   April, 100 mile bike ride on Saturday 16th   and the London Marathon on the 17th.  I am well aware that this was by no means a unique series and especially given that a significant number of people have done multiple back-to-back full Ironmans.  It was though, something of a challenge to me, even in the conception of it and as my body will testify, in the completion of it.


I started the first swim at just before 0700 with what Dave Jones describes as 'my waddle' up the first of 160 lengths of the 25-metre pool.  I was aiming to complete in a time of 80 minutes or so and thus tried to maintain a steady 30 seconds a length.  I tried to concentrate on tempo and style - something that I insist others do when we train.  Requiring it is one thing, doing it is another.  I found it quite difficult at first to achieve any kind of rhythm, let alone tempo, with the constant turning.  It did start to come after about 300 metres and, thereafter, I managed to keep a good, steady, even pace.  I quickly lost count of the numbers of lengths and relied on Lizzie showing me a countdown board.  I finished in little over 76 minutes.  It was a little quicker than I wanted but I must say, I really enjoyed the whole thing.  It was a great training session.


The first ride the following day was an experience I will not forget.  It was not that it was my first ever 100-mile ride but that so many people had organised themselves into groups to cycle around the various laps of the course with me.  I was really moved by the enthusiasm and commitment.  I had devised a route that took in 3 laps that took us from my house through Ditchling, along the bottom of the Downs to Cooksbridge, up the A275 to Chelwood Gate, then to Horsted Keynes and back through Cockhaise to my house.  I intended to try to cycle at somewhere between 14 and 15 mph and so finish in a little under 7 hours.  The weather was superb and just got better.  We ticked along, chatting about everything under the sun.  We maintained the hope for pace on the first lap, slowed a little on the second and picked it up on the third.  The last bit of the third lap was bit of a mess.  My bike computer was only intermittently picking up the mileage.  I got it into my mind, and I know it was stupid, that the computer had to show 100 miles plus before I could finish.  Trevor Moore was with me (Steve Mac' had had to branch off earlier because he was running out of time).  He and I ended up pedalling up and down Gravelye Lane until my computer tripped over the 100-mile mark.  Goodness knows how far we actually did but Trevor is a patient man.


The Brighton Marathon was an experience and a half.  I am by no means a runner and, despite the ministrations of Paul Wills, I was not looking forward to it.  I set out at a steady pace aiming to get somewhere around the 4 hour mark.  The weather was splendid, if a bit too hot.  The event itself was absolutely fantastic.  The support was incredible.  The spectators were 3 or 4 deep from the very start through to the end.  We really do have a marathon to be proud of.  Unfortunately, my performance did not match the quality of the event.  Someone switched my energy supply off at 20 miles, just as we got into the dreaded Shoreham Harbour, the one place where there was little spectator support.  I went from just under 9 minute miles to walking in a matter of metres.  Thankfully, Steve Birchall came passed at about 21 miles.  He stopped and then helped me to the end.  I was in tatters for the last 3 miles.  Steve managed to coax me over the line in 4 hours 5 minutes and 51 seconds.  I then proceeded to nose dive into the concrete just after the finish, making a complete and utter idiot of myself.  After a dowsing in the sea (in lieu of an ice bath) I then gave back all of the Poweraid that the organisers had kindly given out on the run.  Unfortunately, I gave it back without the bottles.  My mood was not helped by a number of horrid blisters, one of which was somewhat deep and across the bottom of my right foot.  I was none too keen to think about what was coming up the following week.  I was disappointed with the time and with my inability to stand up to the physical challenge.  It was quite a low time.


The next week seems to be a bit of a blur.  I kept to the regime that Paul Wills had set me and was able to sit in the cold baths for 10 minutes without expending my entire repertoire of expletives. I enjoyed the London Marathon registration because of the buzz and the opportunity to go to the exhibition.  I left there on the Wednesday afternoon actually looking forward to what was to come.


The swim on the 15th went well.  I stuck to a steadier pace and felt comfortable completing the 4kms in 78 minutes and 2 seconds.  The ride the next day was okay too.  Once again a host of people came out even though a good number were racing the next day in Cambridge at the qualifying race for the European Duathlon Champs or in the 25 miles time trial.  We ticked along at a slightly quicker pace, chatting the whole way and setting the world to rights.  We altered the course slightly to get off the A275.  It seems that the sun brings out the worst in motorists.  Some cannot evidently comprehend that cyclists have as much right to be on the roads as they have.


Oddly enough, I was looking forward to the London Marathon.  I haven't done it since 1989.  I was like a little boy waiting for Christmas.  Gone were the dreadful thoughts at the end of Brighton.  David Rickets and his wife kindly took me up to the start.  David was really great in looking after me and certainly through the first 13 miles.  My plan was to run on heart rate at 9 minute-mile pace for the first half and to see what happened thereafter.  Everything went to plan, although David and I got separated at about 14 miles.  I felt pretty good physically and so just kept going on heart rate.  I got tired when I saw the 26-mile marker.  For some reason, my brain decided that that indicated the end and I spent a little while trying to persuade myself that there was .2 of a mile left to go.  I finished in 3 hours 53 minutes and 13 seconds.  It might have been a relatively slow time but I must confess to having been chuffed to bits.


I have thought quite a lot about the experience.  I set out to do it for a number of reasons: to raise money for the club charity, to give myself a challenge, to get into the routine of a reasoned training plan and to lose some weight.  I have achieved those goals.  I enjoyed the whole experience.  I also learned a great deal.  At the risk of sounding sanctimonious, there are two things that stand out for me: (1) the mind is something with considerable potential but all too often I have allowed mine to be a limiter in terms of what I might be able to achieve and (2) my body can withstand far more than I have given it credit for.


My heartfelt thanks to everyone.



Mark Jordan

4 Athletes qualify for World Duathlon Champs


BAR  Race 1 Cambridge Duathlon  Sunday 17th April 2011

6 athletes from Mid Sussex Tri Club were up before 5am to get to the start in time for this very well organised event.

There was still the usual frantic pre-race adjustments. Both Steve and Rob decided it was a flat enough course to try racing with disc wheels for the first time ever which meant a bit of cassette and brake adjustment. James had a new set up without a disc wheel, but was the only competitor without a timing chip. Pete decided to throw himself, his bike and a complete stranger's bike onto the floor for no apparent reason, whilst dressing up for a deep midwinter race (it was sunny and 15 degrees!). Luckily common sense took over and he stripped off his thermals, but then also removed his tri-bars (just to give the other old gits a chance). Ant and Dec, sorry, Dave seemed totally organised by comparison.

Ant, Dave and James were off in the second wave with Rob, Pete and Steve 5 minutes behind. The first run was a fairly flat and fast 7.5km and it went largely as expected with James making a flying start. His time of 28.07 was nearly 2 minutes ahead of Pete who was making a cautious start in 29.54, still very quick. Then came Steve and Rob in 30.54 and 31.03 respectively, then Ant (32.29) immediately followed by Dave (32.30).

All 6 did good fast transitions but king of T1 was Dave in 39 seconds but even the slowest was 67 seconds so very little time was wasted.

The bike circuit was an interesting mix of superb Time Trialling roads, and tight turns at junctions, which included one point on each lap requiring a complete stop and foot down before being allowed to continue.

Not surprisingly it was again James who was flying with 64.12 for the 40km. Rob soon caught and passed Steve on his way to a time of 67.51, just a second ahead of Dave 67.52. Ant was about a minute down with 69.00. Steve was surprised to reel in Pete on the bike, until he realised that Pete was not using tri-bars which would have made a huge difference. Steve did 69.49 and Pete 71.30.

T2 was another speedy affair. Even the slowest time was only 57 seconds but king of T2 was Steve in 39 seconds although Dave was again very quick, just a second behind, which makes him overall transition king this time!

The second run was the same as the first, but then the flat run suddenly didn't seem so flat. It was also now quite a lot warmer. Steve was delighted to find that he was the fastest on the second run with 31.23, less than 30 seconds slower than the first run, largely due to seeing Rob ahead and having someone to aim at. As usual he only overtook with 800m to go with Rob struggling with cramp. James' second run was only 3 seconds slower than Steve - 31.26, with Pete slightly behind in 31.33. Rob did 33.18, Ant 34.48 and Dave 35.19.

Overall James was well clear of everyone else, finishing some 8 minutes clear of Steve in the end  who was 27 seconds ahead of Rob. Pete finished another minute down, then Dave 2 minutes behind and Ant about a further minute down.

This was a great first race of the season, which was a World Duathlon Championship qualifier. We must now wait to see if any of us have actually qualified.


RESULTS  WINNER 1h54m09s                                     

James DEAR        2h05m15s    1st     10pts    9.72%     
Steve ALDEN         2h13m33s    2nd       9      16.99       
Rob HOODLESS     2h14m00s    3rd       8      17.39        
Pete HARRIS         2h14m53s    4th       7      18.16        
Dave LASHBROOK   2h16m57s    5th       6      19.97       
Ant GREY               2h18m19s    6th       5      21.16       


First Southwater swim of 2011

Wonderful weather greeted us as we began our first Southwater  swim of 2011.  

Tim and Clare, Jules, Rose, Trevor, Sharon, Rachel, Steve Mac and Kay all arrived in nervous anticipation of their first open water lake swim of the year.

All agreed it was a lot warmer than expected. The warm evening sunshine still offering a 21 degree air temp and the clear, algae free water made for a wonderfully refreshing swim after the confines of the pool throughout winter.

We look forward to seeing other club members next Monday.