Ok, Amanda's done her first triathlon, but before the biggie - Leeds
Castle - she wants another practice run. There's an organisation
called "IntoTri" whose aim is more or less to offer the parkrun
experience in triathlon form, and they have a free event starting
from the Walton Leisure Centre that she's signed up to do.
When I say "free", it's free per-event, but you are expected to buy
a timing chip kit for £15 as a one-off. Strictly speaking, you don't
have to, but I get the definite impression it would be
So Amanda's bought her kit - or at least paid for it - online, and
expects to pick it up at registration.
Pity registration have never heard of her :-(((
They look at the printout of the email she shows them and agree
that, yes, it does say that she's bought her kit and signed
up to this event, but there have been a few glitches with the system
and it looks like she's one of them, sorry. She can take part, but
they don't have a timing chip for her, so... err.. sorry.
But then it turns out that the timing system isn't working anyway!
They've got some potential stars of the future to lead the way, but
as they complete their swim they don't move into transition but get
told to wait a bit. And wait a bit more. And more. They wont have to
dry themselves at this rate. Eventually the Chinese Whisper Tannoy
provides the story/rumour that the timing system is completely
<ahem> and nobody knows why or how, let alone how to fix it.
Eventually it's decided - as much by the competitors as the
organisers - that they'll just get on with it and do without the
timing. They'll manually take start times so it should be possible
to get overall figures at the end if nothing else.
But some competitors have come with their own technical support
team: I can take pictures of Amanda at appropriate points and work
out the detailed splits from the timestamps.
So, let's begin...
Is she rotating too much? What would Barbara say?
Out of T1.
This is the scenic bit of the bike ride. It is not representative.
Strictly speaking, T2 begins after you leave the road, but
Amanda is unsure and dismounts a bit early.
Out of T2 and into the run.
Running is obviously Amanda's strongest discipline at the moment,
and she's now overtaken people she couldn't get past on the bike.
And we're done.
Official timings: <ahem> knows.
"It's ok, I brought my own" timings:
swim start: 07:53:36 swim: 9:51
Of course, as I write this now (a bit late...), we've
just seen the ITU Leeds triathlon completed in about 25 minutes by
people whose wetsuits fly off by magic, whose bikes are clearly
nuclear powered, and who run in seven-league boots! It's unfortunate
that Leeds [Castle] is going to have some serious top tri-ers,
because Amanda's going to think, "Oh god, I'm so pathetic compared
to Olympic champions" rather than "Hey, I'm ahead of all the other
middle-aged matrons who've never done an Olympic tri before!".
swim end: 08:03:27 T1: 3:03
bike start: 08:06:30 bike: 41:02
bike end: 08:47:32 T2: 1:21
run start: 08:48:53 run: 25:57
run end: 09:14:50 total: 1:21:14
On a related note, we went to Shepperton on Wednesday, and Amanda
did her first ever open-water swim in a wetsuit. While she was doing
that, I got chatting to Emma who was in charge, and she told me that
the mere fact of practicing would put Amanda ahead of a lot of
first-time Leeds entrants. I was a bit flabbergasted, to say the
least - people really start a serious competitive event
without ever having done the specific discipline in training?!
But no, maybe I shouldn't be so surprised. As the saying goes,
nobody ever went bust underestimating the public.
Thank goodness you are all not the public!
Love to all,