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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Stirling Aquathlon

At the crack of dawn on 11th October, 10 EUTriers set out on a journey. Beyond the walls of Edinburgh to the distant land of Stirling. This course would pace us through a 750m pool swim, in Stirling’s prestigious national training pool, and on to a 5km run route around the University campus, starting with a conker of a hill. This race was to double up as Scottish Student Aquathlon Championships, so no pressure.

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Arriving hours early we preceded to transition for set up, in pure amateur form three of us forgot spare shoes, resulting and soggy socks and freezing feet for the next couple of hours, better luck next time. In awe of the kids that came up to our knees racing before our turn. This gave us a chance to psych ourselves up before we took to the pool. After Declan’s pro tips we were divided into multiple heats and we were off, with a mid-swim timing chip falling off panic, proceeded by two more EUTrier’s chips (who attaches them to paper bands anyway?!) the race continued. Out of the pool into the cool air, legging it across transition all ran smoothly and reunited with shoes. First encounter of the run, a mountain it seemed rising high but short, shall not defeat us.

Generally speaking, a good run route with many corners to discover, across marshland, road, running track, pavements, all in one! The finish line came closer, except I didn’t notice the finish directional sign so headed out on a third lap before realising …oops. All making it across the muddy red carpet of the finish line to be awarded with a medal.

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Congratulations to Hazel Donaldson was the first EUTri girl to make it across the line 55th in total, with Euan Cunningham to lead in EUTri’s mens team coming 7th in total. All exhausted, running on race adrenaline, learnt a few lessons to be prepared for next races to come.

Tilly Dyson

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Ayr 3 Castles Duathlon – Scottish Student Sport Duathlon Champs

On the 19th of April 4 EUTri members headed to Ayr for the ‘3 Castles Duathlon’. It was an early start for me, Sophie and driver Paul, setting off from the CSE at 6:30am. Upon arrival in Ayr, signing in at Paul’s old primary school, we checked out the route plans and set our bikes up in transition. Rachel arrived, having come down the night before from Aberdeen, followed shortly after by Bronagh who stays in Ayr. Before we knew it the race briefing was over and we were gathered behind the start line. A marshal shouted ‘GO!’ and we were off for the first 5k. Once out of the built up area we were running along the beautiful coast along a dirt road, taking us past the first castle. Once we reached the furthest point out we ran back along the road to complete the first 5k. Next up, the 27k bike. Again, another stunning route along the coast with views of the Ailsa Craig and all 3 castles. The views combined with the blue sky and only a light wind made me forget about the burn I was beginning to feel in my legs. After what must have been about 20k, Bronagh overtook me and we spurred each other on for one final push. After trading places a few more times we reached transition for the last time pretty much neck-and-neck. Then it was on to the final 5k. The same route out and back but this time my legs felt like they were going to give up underneath me. Bronagh got off to a great start and managed to open up a gap between us. Determined not to lose sight of her I kept pushing, telling myself “It will all be over soon”, and after a final 100m dash to the finish it was. Desperate for some water and a good stretch we were all very happy with our efforts. After stuffing our faces with the great selection of sandwiches and cakes on offer it was time for the prize giving. Since it was incorporating the Scottish Students Duathlon, we managed to take home 2nd and 3rd female (Sophie and Bronagh) and 3rd male (myself). This was a great bonus from my point of view as I wasn’t expecting to do so well! And that was it. Time to head back and stop putting off uni work! Looking forward to next year already!Kenny Girvan's photo. Ross McKendrick

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Tranent Interviews

After this year’s Tranent Sprint Triathlon, we took the opportunity to interview one of our Alumni, Dechlan Wilson, as well as world champion Alison Patrick and her guides (http://britishtriathlonmedia.org/profiles/detail/alison-patrick), both of whom took part this year.  Here’s what they had to say!

Dechlan:

How did you get into Triathlon?

-I was a swimmer in my younger days. A family friend, Kyle, lent me his bike and entered me into East Fife Triathlon in 2004. I loved it and never looked back!

What would you say is your best discipline?

-Swimming definitely, as cycling can be boring and running is just hard!

And your inspiration?

-Rocky Balboa, he was a true heroic athlete and showed me what training and competing hard is like.

What about your greatest achievement so far?

-Winning Scottish Schools Triathlon in 2006 in front of a capacity crowd and against the fiercest competition.

Do you have a favourite race?

-Peebles Triathlon because it is set in the most beautiful area in the world, it is home, and there is always a tip top athlete who wins it. But seriously, it is a great race to do as it generally has great weather, it is relatively flat and is easy to get to.

Any top tips for the rest of us?

-Train hard and practice at racing speed / effort. Being good at medium paced effort is no good for racing!

Do you have any race day rituals?

– I always pray to God that I will use the talents I have to the best of my ability and race well and fast, and that nerves don’t get the better of me!

– I always make sure I have a can of Irn-Bru ready as my post race treat!

Alison Patrick:

How long have you been doing triathlon for?

-Over the last three years, only the last year I did any sort of elite racing, previously I just did local races.

How did you get into triathlon?

-I was a runner, I was an international runner but I got injured and missed out on the qualifying time for Beijing so I kind of lost motivation and someone said, ‘Why don’t you try triathlon?’ and I was just doing it purely for fun and so that I could enjoy sport again.

What’s your favourite discipline?

-Well the run was my strength but to be honest I’m loving the bike at the moment because you can just go so fast!

Is there anyone in particular who inspires you?

-No, just the people around me, seeing people training hard in your group is inspiring really.

What do you think your greatest achievement is so far?

-Well, winning world champs after only a year was pretty good!

So what’s your favourite race?

-I really enjoyed Canada because the swim was in a chlorinated lake so it was just like swimming in a swimming pool but open water. It was really good and the bike course was tough, it was quite hilly; a lot of our races have flat courses because of the wheelchair athletes whereas this had quite a good hill on it and it was good going downhill, a very technical downhill which was quite fun.

Is there any top tips you could give for the big race day?

-Just don’t let any distraction affect you and remember you can only control how you are feeling and what you can do. Ignore all the external stuff.

What are your plans for the next year or so?

-This year from July onwards is all about getting qualifications for Rio but this year we’ve got Europeans, a test event in Rio and the world champs again, so in theory I want to be in a position to defend my title, and I’m getting much more excited because guides are getting a lot more supported everywhere compared to previously.  Last year I only met up with my guide who raced with me a couple of times over the year, whereas Hazel (Alison’s guide) is based in Edinburgh so I’ll be seeing her quite a lot so it’ll be much better.

So do you train together all the time?

-At the moment we have been once a week but now Hazel has funding she’ll be going part time from work. So we can get a bit more of a plan together, because it helps on the bike just training to get used to each other because you don’t have as much communication. You know each other’s style, you know your changing gears and all that sort of stuff.

(To Guides) As guides, what’s your history of athleticism? How did you get into triathlon and being a guide?

-Well we’re in the same club so we swim together in the same lane, although now Alison’s a lot faster we’re not in the same lane. It’s just a case of realising that Alison needs that support to be able to get somewhere.

-Alison: when I first started off in West Lothian Triathlon Club it was just if any of the guys said “yeah we’ll try go on your tandem, we’ll take you swimming if you like”. They all just helped out loads, I wouldn’t have got through last year without them!

Hazel, how did you get into being a guide; have you been doing it for a long time?

-Well no, it’s all new to me. Got a phone call one day and it was the head of Scottish Triathlon saying “We’ve got this person wanting to go to Madrid, do you want to be her guide for the very last Series race. And I just said “yeah, sure I’ll go out.” Then that didn’t happen because of work commitments and stuff.

-Alison: I had a panic thinking, “really? I don’t want to race with a new guide?!”

-Hazel: and then British Triathlon went out and asked for potential guides to apply so they had a load of people applying and they picked ten of the top applications and we went down to Loughborough to get tested and then they chose the top 4 out of those. It’s not purely done on strength, it’s also done on your lifestyle as well, being the sort of person who can be selfless. I suppose it was just for Alison to get the best quality guide she could get.

(To Hazel): Did you ever consider going pro yourself?

-Yeah I was at that point where I was either going to take the next step and I’ve still got plans this year to do a few elite races. But the opportunity to support someone going for an Olympic medal, it was a no brainer really.

-Alison: yes it was very selfless.

-Hazel: It’s great, I’ve got a wonderful relationship with this one here!

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BUCS Duathlon

On the 15th November some of the Performance squad, along with drivers, headed down to the BUCS duathlon. Paul turned up with his bike bag, and must have been disappointed to find out that we weren’t heading somewhere more exotic than Bath. After a long journey down, with only one detour to take in the sights of Blackburn, we arrived in Swindon. After taking in the tourist attractions of Swindon, we got an early night.

Race day came and everyone’s enthusiasm was apparent as we packed the van again, none more so than Conor who was telling everyone who would listen how confident he was… We arrived at Castle Combe racing circuit and it was clear that a lot of athletes followed Sam’s philosophy of buying performance! The race consisted of a 2 mile run around the perimeter of the racing circuit, a 10 mile cycle on the circuit and then the same run again. Fortunately it was a dry start to the day, however despite being 400 miles south, the promised warm weather didn’t materialise and it was freezing! The first men’s race started at 1:30, with Sam, Paul and Andy in this one. Paul and Sam had very strong first runs, me, not so much! The cycle was around a racecourse, so I had a great time pretending to be a racing car although I’m sure Paul and Sam were more focused on racing given their times! After a good cycle and a very slick transition, Sam was the first of the Edinburgh boys onto the run. Unfortunately, London boy Sam was not dressed for the occasion and was visibly suffering from the cold conditions. Despite this, he held his second run together to finish a good 30th in a very strong field. Meanwhile Paul, from Orkney, was enjoying the positively tropical conditions (compared to what he’s used to!) and had an excellent second run to finish 26th! I jogged home in 59th managing to keep my dignity intact by keeping the St Andrews boys behind me.

Then was the women’s race, with another tough field, including the current U23 World Champion! Sophie had a superb first run putting her in a good position. Sarah and Yvonne also ran well before putting their newly learned transition skills to good use! After a good ride Sophie had a brilliant second run, running through a lot of the field to finish 23rd. Sarah also had a strong second run to come 91st and Yvonne posted a great bike time and came 130th.

James and Conor were in the 2nd men’s race. James had a great race finishing in 3rd after leading the race for most of the bike (106th overall). Despite his bleak outlook on the race Connor put together a solid performance, with a strong second run to finish 152nd overall.

Our men’s team came 11th overall, and the women’s team was 23rd. At 4pm, once all the bikes and Paul’s bike bag were loaded up, we hit the road for the long journey up. It was here that my navigational skills came undone. Several wrong turns and a few litres of coke later we were back on track. In a high of hyperactivity the journey flew by, especially with James in charge of the tunes. We arrived back to Edinburgh at 1am after a good weekends racing. Now to recover before the next one!

Andy Christie

 

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Sam’s Summer Racing

Dunkerque

 Dunkerque provided the first race of my season and also the opportunity to spend some time with my French club over ‘La Manche’ near Lille. The race itself was in a format I had never experienced before; it followed the relay format, in teams of 2, but the last 1500m of the run leg was run together alongside my team-mate. Coming into the race with a decent few months training behind me and being partnered with an Elite duathlete I knew that we had a good shout at a podium. The race itself played out to our plan and by the time we were running the last 1500m we were in 2nd position chasing down the leaders. Unfortunately, they were just too far ahead and we finished up in 2nd only 20secs down from the winners. I was pleased with the result and the whole week, experiencing the French Tri culture and staying with Vincent, was very enjoyable and one which I hope to repeat and maybe even better next year!

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BUCS Standard Distance Full Report: Road Trip, Racing and near death experiences!

 Being down in the Derby area, BUCS provided an opportunity for a road trip down to England. With the car packed up Andy, Conrad and myself journeyed down the M6 to find a random lake in the middle of nowhere. Conrad, a student over from USA, had been training with the Gateway swim squad all year. With Andy and myself fired up from the opportunity to race each other for the first time, we thought our relatively unknown squad could do some damage within the field. Furthermore, let’s not forget Alice! She had travelled up from her house in the leafy surroundings of the south coast and was flying the flag for the Eutri Girls.

 

We travelled down to the local Travelodge the night before the race, did the usual course familiarisation and then set off for the bright lights of Burton-upon-Trent to seek out race fuel. It is at this point where the subject of my report title comes into view. Conrad, our designated driver who had driven down the motorway with relatively few incidences, now found himself in a situation which provided a somewhat greater challenge for someone used to driving down the road on the other side across the Atlantic. This situation was a series of roundabouts in which both myself and Andy can say that we are glad to come out alive from (ok slight exaggeration but it would be safe to say if our heart rate wasn’t up from the prospect of a 5am race the next day, those few roundabouts certainly got it beating). Anyway, we’ll leave that story there…..

 

Onto race day. With our stomachs fuelled, cups of beetroot juice downed (apparently 10% performance gains…) and final bike checks completed, we headed out to the race start where we met up with Alice and begun our warm up and readied ourselves for the start. The swim was slightly eventful with my goggles coming off just after the first buoy which made the rest of the lake swim a slight struggle; however, after a decent T1 and hard few first kilometres on the bike I managed to catch the main chase group containing athletes I knew were of similar ability to myself. Andy, after a solid swim was a further few minutes up the road and Conrad was also working hard behind me. Cycling alongside a group of athletes who are travelling similar speeds makes the non-drafting format at this level reasonably difficult but after 20kms I managed to pull away and focused on closing down the leaders, including Andy, up the road. Reaching T2 I had climbed into the top 12 and could see Andy racking his bike and heading out on the run. Team Eutri was looking in a strong position!

 

The run was three laps around the lake and with Andy just ahead of me and running fast out of transition I knew if I could maintain good form we were in for a top team finish. The run is the strongest discipline for both Andy and myself and this proved to be the case as we came through the field picking off our competition throughout the laps. Andy’s run form proved electric as he ran the 2nd fastest time of the day running himself into overall 4th position, just outside of the medals, and I came in 9th. Conrad, Our third team-mate, wasn’t too far behind finishing off our team in 29th. These results were the best ever posted in Eutri’s history and earned us 4th in the BUCS men’s team competition (something we will look to build on this year). But what about Alice I hear you say? Well. Although, she didn’t have a team to back her up, she produced an outstanding performance also finishing in 9th position posting individual splits that the majority of the male field could only look on in envy of. Again, we can hopefully put out a full women’s team next year that challenges at the top end of the Uni rankings.

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Sam Woods

 

 

 

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Braids Hill Cross Country 2014

Last weekend (following a downpour on Friday just to guarantee a mud bath) was Braid Hills Cross Country. The day itself was crisp and clear, making for some stunning views of our glorious city from atop Braids. The challenging, undulated course of a 3 mile loop around Braid Hills situated between King’s buildings and the Pentlands, lived up to its reputation. The narrow bridle path was a slippery mess making for hard work up the steep inclines and a hair-raising descent.  Having tightened our laces to the point of reduced circulation, pinned on our race numbers and been adorned in the essential war paint the triathletes were set to run (well trudge) the few miles from King’s to the start line.

The women’s race was off first off consisting of one muddy lap of the course. EuTri had 7 athletes representing the club, and the winner of the women’s race came in at a speedy 18.06 from HBT club whilst the first EuTri girl, Lucy, plodded in at 22.27 resulting in 81st out of 171 runners overall. Yvonne, the club’s secretary, came in next in 145th place looking very composed and with hardly any mud to show for her efforts!

Next came the men’s race with over 250 competitors and a fierce level of competition including a commonwealth athlete. The course had been nicely ‘warmed up’ by the stampede of women making for a very slippery, tricky path to negotiate. The men raced two laps (6 miles) at an unbelievably quick pace with the front runners lapping some of the more senior competitors…

Paul was first to cross the line from EuTri (although controversially donning the green vest…) and came in at an impressive 34.22 resulting in 17th overall. He was followed swiftly by new comer Euan who had invested heavily in the race via Sports Direct fell shoes. The shell out paid off and helped Euan secure 43rd position (36.14). Running Captain Sam was on hand all day cheering and giving vital moral support.

All the runners of the day finished tired, happy and caked in mud. Of course they were then prepped for a P row night out with rest of the club, which proved as fun as ever!

 

Lucy White

 

 

 

 

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StAUTri Autumn Duathlon

On 26th October, fifteen of Edinburgh’s finest triathletes ventured to the Kingdom of Fife for the Autumn Duathlon put on by St Andrews University Triathlon Club. The first challenge of the day was a game of bicycle jenga, with President Louise and Secretary Yvonne displaying excellent physical and mental skill to squeeze all of our bikes into the van. The journey north was also not without difficulties – high winds closed the Forth Road Bridge to us and meant we had to take the “scenic route” to the hometown of golf and royal romance.

After arriving at the University sports pitches and unloading/reassembling bikes, we picked up timing chips and race numbers, and deposited bikes in the transition area. It was then time to get changed and decide on the optimal number of layers for the rather cold and windy race ahead of us. Coach Linda briefed us on riding technique for the strong winds and walked through the transition process for those of us less familiar with racing. After a little more chilly and nervous waiting, we lined up at the starting line, ready to take on the 5k run, 20k cycle and 2.5k run.

UntitledWe were set off by the enthusiastic and fluorescent-clad race organiser of StAUTri, with the athletes quickly spreading out as the first couple of corners of the sports pitches were rounded. Social Sec Harriet and I paced ourselves for the first part of the race, but could see our EUTri team-mates both in positions of contention and putting in solid first legs throughout the field. We completed two laps of the uni sports pitches, which was a very flat route, but made interesting by the incredibly strong winds that battered us from different directions at each turn. It was great to have Linda and Louise cheering us on and flying the flag (the brand new shiny “Mon the EUTri” banner!) for all the EUTri racers.

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Next, it was onto the cycling leg of the race, passing through the transition area and attempting to quickly put on helmets etc. (fastening my helmet has never been so tricky!). I was a bit disorientated getting out and onto my bike, but was soon off onto the backroads of the Fife countryside. I felt really great getting onto the bike, and the first few miles went past very quickly. It was very satisfying to overtake quite a few people along the way! However, the hills and headwind soon scuppered my rhythm. With crosswinds and gusts of up to 55mph to contend with, there was definitely an extra element of challenge added to the race! After turning to head back towards St Andrews, there was a lot of well-earned downhill, which everyone seemed very glad to see.

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Going back through transition, I saw that a fair number of athletes had already completed the race and were enjoying their post-run bananas, including some of our very own EUTri-ers. All that was left for me was a simple final running lap of the playing fields! The notorious bike-to-run transition was rather painful, and it took me a few minutes to re-find my land legs. However, it was a great feeling to summon up the last of my energy to power through to the finish. We were all rewarded with a luminous finishers’ t-shirt and some snacks at the finish line, but the real prize was a slice of Louise’s delicious homemade flapjack.

There were fantastic performances all round from the club, with Paul Kerr storming home to finish first junior male, and third overall. Conor Crilly also excelled, coming in as third junior male and ninth overall. Our first EUTri lady over the line was Allison Stewart. I was really pleased with my own performance, managing to get a PB (totally counts if it’s your first duathlon, right?!). It was a great race with a friendly atmosphere, and demonstrated that even bike transport challenges, road diversions and high winds can’t stop the mighty EUTri.

standrews5By Heather Kennedy

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Sam and Vincent’s Summer Training

We started our team preparation for the first stage of the Division 3 French championship, in Dunkerque, after a long winter of training, on Thursday the 22nd of May. I had come back to France a bit earlier but that was the day Sam arrived in France. His first training was running on the Eurostar platform yelling “Mon velo!!” as no-one was disembarking the precious bike from the train. But all ended well and we could train a bit, including a nice “easy last training before the race” in the flat country, aka Belgium, with VATri our French club. (It actually turned out to be super hard session…)

Dunkerque is a big race. On the same day it holds the first stage of the Division 1 championship, which is to triathlon what a combined EPL and Spanish Liga would be. Sartrouville the favourite to win the league (and the club that went on to eventually win it) has the Brownlees, Javier Gomez, Mario Mola, David Hauss, Richard Murray, Fernando Alarza, Raphael Montoya etc. Mario Mola destroyed the race running the 5 km in 15min20 to take the win. He would win ITU London a week later. The girls’ race was probably more impressive, as the podium, Gwen Jorgensen, Andrea Hewitt, Sarah Groff demonstrates.

But the real stuff was at 4 pm, the race where legends are made. At 4pm the realm of fierce competition and adversity, was about to start. The race was a relay where we competed in teams of 2: 750 m swim in the harbour (even jellyfish came to watch it), 12.5 km on the bike (3 laps with 10+ turns per lap), and 2.5 km run (plus 1.5 km to run with the partner at the end of the second relay). While I was to lead out my team, Sam was going second in his relay. It was my first race since the unmissable Aberdeen aquathlon… in October 2012 (*sigh* injuries …) and when the horn sounded you could see my over-enthusiasm as I was 2nd after 200 m. In realising this, however, I made the mistake of slowing down too much and I also missed the first buoy by some meters so the pack that was overtaking me did not add drowning me to overtaking me. I still manage to finish my swim in 10’04 and in good condition placing in the third pack.

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  A slight mistake in T1, where I touched my bike before harnessing my helmet, made me lose precious seconds. I would never get those seconds back, and even worse, my lack of training due to many months of injuries cost me too much and from 18th position I finished my ride in 50th. I only salvaged 5 positions on the run leg and by the time I handed the time chip to my teammate Sam was well underway into his swim leg in 2nd position overall (his teammate having posted the fastest cycle and run time of anybody). The fight for 2nd or 3rd continued on the swim and the ride, but imposing his superior running pace Sam progressively escaped to take 2nd position; a position he and his teammate kept up to the finish.

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  The club’s 3rd place in the overall team competition meant we qualified for the second stage of the D3 championship. However an administrative imbroglio would disqualify Sam (and, with less consequences, me) from racing in the second stage.

  Draft races are very fun, and the relay format was also great. Next year’s race is already pinned as a one I must not miss in my race calendar!

  The summer continued, I raced another 4 races from June 1st to July 5th, getting a lot of experience. My season finally finished on the first weekend of October near La Rochelle for the French Triathlon Cup final. That was a Team Time Trial meaning each team starts at 1 min interval and races against the clock. The time of the 3rd athlete to cross the line determines club’s finish time (so if a club fields 5 or 4 athletes they can afford dropping 2 or 1). Our club fielded 4 athletes including Sam and myself. My role was if possible to go in front of the swim and protect everyone; however, with Sam in stellar form and my poor starting position on the beach it took me 400m to finally take 2nd position of our club pack and provide a draft to our strongest rider (our 4th member was swimming some 30 seconds behind, half of it he closed in transition).

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  At the end of the T1 we waited for our 4th team member to avoid disqualifying him, which would be silly as he is a strong rider. Some tentative bike mounting meant that it took us 1500 m to get in appropriate team TT position, but, by then, our strongest rider fell off on the cobbles! Sam and I avoided him in panic style methods. However, the rider soon got back on his bike and sprinted onwards. The pace must have reached 50 km/h as it felt much much faster than the day before when we rode that portion of the course at 43 km/h in training. The resulting pace meant I dropped off the back of our group. The team’s pace was high; a 41 km/h average over the 20 km with two 180 degrees turn and a town section full of tricky turns. The rest of the team managed to keep it together until the run where one of the members, while having ran a 1h14 half marathon 4 weeks before, couldn’t manage to go faster than 19’51 in the 5km. Even though it felt like we have a margin for progression, the club managed its best ever results in the race, improving on last year’s time by nearly 3 minutes.

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   Again this was a very fun race, it was also great to race “on paper” against some upcoming big names like Aurelien Raphael or some less young famous people such as Sylvain Dodet or Jessica Harrisson.

Vincent.

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Pub Golf!

A year had passed since our last pub golf encounter and there was much riding on our performance this year as reigning champions. We (Paul and Yvonne) have both been training hard all year for this event, putting in the hard endurance sessions and equally important cross training. We’d like to think we had our pub golfing skills down to a tee. It seemed only right that the dream team be brought together once again to defend our title of ‘Pub Golf Champions’.

This year, we were assigned a new team to lead to victory. The athletes: Sam and Vincent, and new to EUTri: Georgie and Katherine.

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 We couldn’t be more impressed by the efforts of the team. We really clubbed together to get hole-in-ones with everything from apple juice to cider, and water to wine (not in the impressive way). The team effort was phenomenal once everyone got into the swing of things, and upon our arrival at the Hive we were deservedly crowned champions for another year and celebrated our win.

It was far from easy holding onto last year’s title. We fought off some hard competition from teams lead by Sam and Jack, Harriet and Hannah, Andy and James, and possibly most impressively from Fern and the winner of the evening for effort, Claire, who pulled out a podium-worthy performance with a broken shoulder.

What was probably nicer than retaining the title was the abundance of fresh faces to the club with most teams fielding an equal old/new member ratio, and maintaining a high standard of golf antics while ‘putting’ us veterans through our paces. One thing we love about EUTri is that everyone is welcome. It was great to have such a mix of people: old and new members, drinkers and non-drinkers, seasoned athletes and first timers. We really came together over visors, inflatable golf clubs, and Argyle clothing, and we can’t wait for the year ahead.

Thank you so much to our marvellous Social Sec Harriet for doing such an awesome job of organising everything. Along with the rest of the club we’re looking forward to the next EUTri social!

And don’t forget, everyone’s a winner when it comes to EUTri Pub Golf!

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