EUtri representation at World Triathlon Championships 2017 by @nichcanflyy

worlds 4Lead up to race day

Over the summer of 2017 I decided to do something different, something challenging but fun, new and interesting. I thought it was time to find something else to the usual routine of uni training for BUCS Triathlon in May and then a summer off. So with that in mind I set out looking for a new challenge.

My friend Bronagh from Eutri was competing at the European Age Group Championships in Dusseldorf earlier on in the summer so I thought I could do something like that. I found out that the Worlds were taking place in September, and in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, not that far considering they were in Mexico the year before and are in Australia next year. To get there you need to qualify, so I set off with my dad to Wales to compete in my first drafting race. It was a sea swim in some really choppy waters which was great fun then a two lap cycle round the headland of Llandudno, an extremely scenic piece of rock jutting out into the sea. After going nice and hard on that I had a run to look forward to along the beach promenade, it could not have been flatter. I had pushed a little too hard in the first two disciplines so paid for it on the run and missed out from the podium by only 7 seconds! But I qualified. I had come second in the age group to Jack Bond (Exeter Uni) who I found myself with in the bike pack at worlds.

Then I contacted Linda to get me in shape for the big race. Two huge training blocks later (not that bad really) and two trips to the mountains (family holiday for one, pure training the other) I felt ready. Three weeks prior to the race, the time when you should be doing your biggest loads and intensities I found myself at the tri club summer trip in the Pyrenees with 4 others from Eutri. The week was spent doing basically a triathlon a day and hours climbing mountains on the bike. Paul pushed me and I am grateful for it now. Best way to spend a holiday I say.

Then a few weeks on the bike was packed again, this time for the real deal. Rotterdam ITU world grand final. The pros were racing the Saturday, Age groupers the Sunday. The city was alive with Triathlon. Every traffic light, bike path and café terrace were lined with eye wateringly beautiful bikes, worth more than any normal persons first car. All the hotels were fully booked and the event venue was buzzing from the Thursday. I registered, met some friends and had a look round the course, though not all of it as I forgot to look for the dismount line which I paid for on race day… Amateur. I also swam at the pool which was taken over by triathletes and met Richard VARGA, only the fastest swimmer in tri. I just missed Duffy which was a shame.

The pro race the next day was incredible. My dad almost walked into Johnny Brownlee as he made his way to the start line. The speed involved, the proximity with the competitors and the margins around each corner, it was all so incredible to see these guys in the flesh. In the end Luis the French man won, with Blummenfelt 2nd and Mola 3rd.

Race Day

Sunday. Race day. Start time: 16.10. Water temperature 16C. Weather Overcast with occasional sun. Wind 4kmh. Ideal conditions. Shoes were racked first on the North side of the river. Then the bike on the south side. The swim was 600m from the bike meaning the longest transition I’ve ever done. Running flat out after a hard swim is never the most pleasant feeling but I knew this was where I would make or break my race as I needed to find a descent pack on the bike leg.

After a warm up of running drills and some bands to get the shoulders going, I made my way to the start pen. I quickly jumped into the water for a quick paddle then waited. It felt like a long time. Finally the announcement came for us to lign up on the pontoon. Then get in. The start was in the water with a hand on the pontoon. Next to me was Marc Auchie, a fellow triathlete from Scotland who I had raced before. As the hooter blared we lashed off into a mad frenzy to avoid getting bashed around, and to get ahead before the first buoy. It was still busy coming into the first buoy so to avoid going too wide I ended up swimming over a few people to cut back in. Then I found myself a good draft to the next buoy. By then the pack was thinning, only two near my flanks, and a small group ahead but too far to worry about. I came out of the swim 10th which considering my background (not swimming), I was happy with but I was not thinking about that at the time.

worlds 5I shot up the platform to terra firma and tried to get the blood to the legs again as I ran towards the bike. Once there the wetsuit flew off and I got off in good time. I dashed on and focused on catching the nearest group. 2k in after a few mad twists and turns over the river and under the bridge I found a pack of 8 who I would do the rest of the cycle with, including two brits Bond and George. We worked well together and ended up doing the same time as the front pack. The corners were my favourite, and I cruised round them watching the others have to sprint hard out of the other side. After our scenic cycle round the city we neared the dismount line, I had no idea where it was, and took my feet out way too late to attempt the usual flying dismount. After the struggle I ran hard with the bike to rack it. Shoes on, I caught up with our group.

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Then the run was a struggle but no more than it was for the other competitors. From there I stayed with bond and kept him in sight as we trundled round the park. The others dropped off one by one. Then the finish line loomed, and I upped the pace, only to find myself neck and neck with another brit for a final 100m sprint. All the training and hard work I had put in over the summer flashed back and I knew I would give it everything. We were equal till only 20m left before he pulled away. I did not give up though. With 5m to go he slowed thinking I would have given up only to be shocked to see me cross the line fractions of a second ahead. Always finish on some sort a victory.

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I had come through 7th in the age group, second brit in. Content.

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After only 2 years doing the sport only slightly seriously I am happy with the race and can’t wait for more!

Nick over and out.

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British Triathlon Sprint Age Group Championships

The performance squad took on the British Triathlon Sprint Age Group Championships at Strathclyde Park, hoping to build on a positive trip to Southport last weekend. The squad as a whole came away with strong results. 18698414_443333459351990_423954446765246695_n

In the 20-24 age group Nicholas Allen was the first EUTri Performance athlete home, just missing the podium, finishing in 4th. Next home was Rian Cook and after being first out of the water, he rounded out the top 10. Sandy Waller finished 16th on what was a very hot day. Shortly behind him came Performance Coach Dechlan Wilson (competing in the 25-29 age group) who finished a strong 7th in his category.

Lewis Strachan, racing for Pro Endurance Coaching, had a strong bike leg finishing 3rd in his age group.


18700103_443333456018657_1896699810807250371_nCompeting in the 16-19 age group, Eilidh Thomson was (narrowly) the first EUTri Performance girl home, finishing a solid 3rd and gaining her her first British Age Group medal.

Next was Bronagh Wishart (20-24) who had a strong run to finish in 8th.

Sarah King and EUTri president Hazel Donaldson were close behind finishing 10th and 13th respectively.

The athletes then competed in the Scottish Triathlon Relay Championships when great fun was had by all in the pouring rain!

 

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BUCS Standard Distance Triathlon

On May 20th, 7 members of EUTri’s performance squad accompanied by two members of the club ventured off down to Southport to compete in BUCS standard distance triathlon and what a fantastic weekend it was. Having met early Saturday morning to load the bikes, the team set off with Coach Dechlan leading the way in the van shortly followed by two cars loaded with luggage. With some heavy rain and poor directions (Eilidh and Bronagh) it was a miracle that the team arrived in good time to register and settle into their accommodation18927186_10207249026903059_802663865_on, all before the sun went down on Saturday evening! I should give a special shout out to Nick who had the courage to complain about an ominous hair found in Bronagh’s Pizza at dinner time, leading to a very embarrassed athlete a very flustered waitress..but money off the bill – cheers Nick! Also, thanks Rian for (not) sharing your dough-balls which you kindly ordered for the table.

On Sunday morning, the team arose early to load up with breakfast and headed off to the race start. For myself, and a couple of others on the team, this was my first triathlon and so as much as I was excited to get stuck in, I was also very nervous! However, after setting up our transitions and hearing far too much about certain team members portaloo experiences (spot the athlete wearing only one sock), the team settled down, got into their wetsuits and got themselves ready to race.

The boys set off first with the girls close behind with all athletes performing brilliantly despite Henry Mackenzie and Nat Lazareff  having to withdraw on the final leg due to injury. Positions were as follows; In the mens race, Nicholas Allen was 18th followed closely by Rian Cook who positioned 20th. Paul Kerr finished in 43rd position and Ali Wood finished 61st. In the18927383_10207249026663053_1034703281_o women’s race, I positioned 14th followed by Bronagh Wishart in 29th and Eilidh Thomson in 34th. Particular well done to Nat who although didn’t finish, absolutely stormed the cycle section! A great weekend had by all!

Mary Macintosh

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East Fife Triathlon

Eight months ago, I didn’t know how to swim. Cycling and running were exercises that i never really did. With the club’s support, I learned how to swim and gained some confident in running and cycling; hence, I decided to take up the challenge and sign up for my first sprint triathlon. The race was held in east fife and the club organised the transportation, lending me a bike, helmet and accessories; they also gave me lots of cheers and support. It was a nice morning, full of anxiety and happiness, I noticed that I had only brought one pair of shoes so we were walking barefoot everywhere. Fun ha! At least it didn’t rain 😊. 17902958_10211335080668784_725042603_o

While waiting for my turn I was looking at the rest of the competitors and yeah, they were pretty good and at some moments it was having an effect on my personal emotions. My last time trial was 16 minutes but the swimming in the competition took me 18 minutes. Walking to the bicycle was a very wet and moody experience and trying to put on the shoes was hard. I got ready in 3 minutes; trying to dry my body wasn’t an easy task and I felt wet until the end of the race. The cycling part was awesome, and I enjoyed every second. But the running was the most difficult of all. The second transition took me 40 seconds only but the running took me a while. At the end of the day, you are competing with yourself and your own limits.

I will encourage everyone in the club to join a race or anyone who is training to give it a try. You will either hate it or like it but as for me, I loved it and I can’t wait to sign up for the next one in UK or in Chile.

Thanks to the Triathlon club for all their support!

Desiree17916877_10211335080468779_1938285151_o

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KB5 Road Race

Triathletes do road races?? Well apparently so as the Fantastic Four from EUTri’s elite descended onto the distant land of Kings Buildings on Saturday, where it appeared we were slightly outnumbered by some other uni club calling themselves the “Haries” (apparently they only do one sport…lol).

With the 12 o’clock start fast approaching there was only one thought on people minds (apart from Strava segments of course). Where was everyone’s (self-proclaimed) favourite triathlete Nicholas Allen? When the breaking news flooded through that he’d in fact slept in and had to make the ultimate sacrifice of not having breakfast everyone was suKB5 1itably sympathetic towards his ordeal (rumour is he was actually too busy crying over not being able to compete in his jazzy new tri suit for another week).

What followed one can only describe as brutal. To say the course was hilly would be an understatement (made only worse by the sights of Nick and Euan’s backsides as they’re slowly getting away from you). EuTri’s performance of the day undoubtedly has to go to medal winner Mary Macintosh, fighting off stiff competition from the Haries and HBT to finish a magnificent 2nd placed female and overall 44th place in 31:28 (take that Haries)!

First male triathlete was President Nicholas Allen, managing a brilliant 14th place in 27:47, closely followed in 15th place by the Monday night running machine that is Euan Cunningham with a time of 28:05. Rounding of the male triathletes was Andrew Johnstone in 18th place, crossing the line in 28:48 (and more importantly making a brief appearance in a Strava segment top ten). Despite our best efforts to claim custody of a certain rather lanky harie (Cameron Young), we were just one member short of a team.

Special mentions must go to a couple triathletes for helping to run the event. Technically the winner of the race (haters will say cycling’s faster than running), Bronagh Wishart cycled in front of the 112 strong field showing the way. Also thanks to Gregor Malcom, who rather impressively managed to sneak his way into an indoors job “looking after the laptops” (definitely not eating cake and watching the World Series Triathlon race). Huge thanks as well to the rest of the marshals and organisers for putting on such a superbly run event.

See you all there next year!

Andrew Johnstone

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Peebles Weekend Trip

image3The Peebles trip was (as expected) a total success. It involved an 18-egg Spanish omelet lovingly prepared by Pau, followed by some very serious swimming (kid armbands and floating noodles included) in a tropical-temperatured pool. Then more food and a fun fell run in the dark in pretty epic blizzard conditions (but we smashed it). And it was all worth it for the delicious pizzas waiting for us on our return. YUM. After a delightful sleep in our luxurious cabins, we set off to tackle some hills on the mountain bikes. We experienced snow, a couple of tumbles, some more snow and some epic descents. All in all a pretty wicked weekend.

Nat Scott Laz

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BUCS Duathlon

On Saturday the 19th of November, 9 members of the Performance Squad set off on their adventure south of the border to compete at the British Universities Sport Duathlon Championships. Among them, many newbies to the world of BUCS
– including myself – set off to race in what would play out to be a new learning experience for all.

The journey to our hotel ‘just off the motorway’ was long with many members (basically the boys) taking the opportunity to get 40 winks in preparation for Sundays race. A nice meal at a local Italian finished the day off nicely and after a quick team meeting, we were off to bed.

Late on Sunday morning, we arrived at Castle Combe Circuit. The race consisted of a 2mile run, 10-mile cycle and another 2 mile run to finish. The boys set off at 1.05pm and the girls at 1.45pm. I had a steady first run, coming in just behind Sarah and was quickly out on to the bike where I attempted to make up as much lost time as possible on the weaker cyclists. The cycle course was amazing – flat and no potholes (or traffic lights) to be seen. Second run was survival but happy to finish within the top 50% of the girls competing with Sarah just behind.bucs-duathlon

The boys all had a strong race with Lewis and Nicholas coming in 27th and 32nd respectively. Gregor and Rian also had strong performances also finishing the top 50. However, Paul da tank came in in an amazing 3rd place despite not knowing whereabouts he was positioned throughout the large majority of the race.

A huge congrats must also go to Tess and Sandy who have not done triathlon before joining us.

If the journey down was long, the journey back up was longer. The minibus was filled with loud music (songs of choice: Disney’s Hakuna Matata and Highland Cathedral) and the changing weather conditions made it much harder to drive. It was, however, a great weekend where a lot was learnt and I’m fairly confident to say all of the squad would be keen to do it again.

Big shout out to Coach Dechlan and Sandy (Paul’s dad) for giving up their weekend to drive us and our bikes all the way to Swindon – your help is enormously appreciated.

Eilidh Thompson

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Aberdeen Aquathlon 2016

running-baerdeenThe club had an awesome trip up to Aberdeen last weekend to compete in the Aberdeen University King’s Aquathlon. It was a great turn out with 19 members from EUTri coming along to race against St. Andrews, Sterling, and Aberdeen university triathlon clubs.

It was a cold and early start at cse on Saturday morning and then we all drove up to the sports village in time register and set up transition in the rain. The longer course racers set off first swimming a distance of 800m followed by a run slightly longer than antrunningicipated of 11.6km around the sports village and finishing round the athletics track. Next was the short course racers, who swam 400m and ran 6.3km. Despite a mix up with the lap counting EUTri still had an incredibly successful day with lots of medals: for the short course Nat was the 2nd female student and Ivan was 3rd male student, while in the long SSS course Rachel was 2nd female, Paul was 1st male and Rian was 2nd male!

Following the race we all went to the Bobbin for copious amounts of delicious pub grub and then headed out into Aberdeen for a night of crazy dancing and surprise champagne deliveries. Overall a fantastic weekend congratulations to everyone who came along and competed.

By Iona Allanaberdeen

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St Andrews Duathlon 2016

st-andrewsThis being my first event and after only one week of being a Eutri member I was unsure as what to expect, however, despite the early start everyone was in good spirits for the upcoming race and the weather conditions were ideal. Although I held up the race briefing unsuccessfully attempting to change pedals on my bike the race got off to an enthusiastic start with the 5km run. The following 23km cycle was a new experience for me personally though the course was fantastic on such a sunny windless day and everyone enjoyed the gentle inclines and long fast descents.

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Edinburgh University presented a strong showing in the results with Paul Kerr finishing first in under an hour and Nicholas Allen following up in second place five minutes behind. Nat and I (the two newbies) recorded some decent times for ourselves and thoroughly enjoyed the experience getting to know the club and of course Coach Linda. Overall it was a fantastic day and a big thank you is in order for the St.Autri organisers and the volunteer marshals on the day for having organised
everything and cheered us along the way!

by Ben Luoma

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St Andrews duathlon

The clocks gave us an hour more in bed, but getting up at 5am or 6am feels the same. In the crisp morning air we swarmed towards our rendezvous point from all over Edinburgh. The bikes were loaded up in a methodical fashion by Sam and Andy, who had obviously done this before. It was my first time racing in Scotland hence the excitement fizzing inside me. I couldn’t wait to get off and properly stretch my legs, likewise, I could feel the others buzzing all around me.

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We got there to find a table, the organiser’s van and a few other competitors on a lush green lawn, next to St Andrews giant telescopes; a simple set up, but it worked. The downside was that facilities were limited… Again with mechanical efficiency Sam and Andy unloaded the bikes, we made final little adjustments, set up the transition, before lining up to start.

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The course took us on a circular run around the playing fields which was very flat indeed. Consequently Paul and Sam took off and left most of us envying their speed, from our position across the fields. This lead was maintained, and with breakneck speed on the cycle, and swift transitions, Paul dashed across the finish line in 1st place, and Sam leisurely came in in second place. I finished 11th, similarly, the others all did great times which the club can be proud of!

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Great day out, fun social racing, and obviously good company. Everybody should give racing a go!

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Nicholas

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