Having joined Beccles Triathlon Club last year, this event was one I was really looking forward to. Our “home” event.
It is a sprint distance triathlon (540m swim in a 30m outdoor pool / 20.3km bike / 6.7km run) which is longer than the distance I normally compete at, however I did Ely Sprint Triathlon last year and although it was slightly shorter I was feeling confident.
The information pack that was sent before the event was great, lots of detail which is ideal for newbies. We were emailed our swim waves and start times the Thursday before the race. To my horror, I was one of the last waves to swim. The competitors I was seeded with freaked me out!! They are all incredible and LOADS faster than me.
Confident I was in the wrong swim wave, I spent the whole of the next few days worrying, playing scenarios through my mind of everyone passing me and the marshals getting board of waiting for me to finish and going home! Will let you know how the swim went in a bit….
Another great bonus to this event was the ability to register the night before the race. So Saturday evening I went and picked up my race number and goodie bag. The goodie bag was fantastic, it included a Beccles Triathlon branded scarf, water bottle and temporary tattoo. A home made flap jack and some Big Skies Food Company brittle. A Beccles Triathlon swimming cap and last but not least a puncture repair kit.
Event day seemed to arrive so quickly and I couldn’t believe the weather, when I first looked out….it was raining…lots!!
In denial and pretending I wouldn’t have to cycle in the rain, I headed over the the Lido. It was so nice going straight to transition to set up having registered the night before. It made it very quick and easy. I decided to try and keep my cycling and running shoes as dry as possible and placed them in carrier bags to keep the worst of the rain off.
The Lido looked great, there was a massage tent offering massages before and after the race. A lovely stall selling event jewellery, Tri-harder and TORQ stalls. Very handy for those forgotten items.
The race began at 8:30 and I had until 9:30 before I was due to start. It was really difficult trying to keep warm and dry. So we all huddled under the shelter at the lido. I was getting more and more nervous as time ticked by. Me being me, had moved on slightly from my swimming woes to now panic about the bike ride. I have never ridden in the rain before on my road bike, and was really worried!
Finally it was time to get into the pool and get warm! I started the swim really strong but then soon caught up with Ginny who was in the lane in front of me. I tapped her feet to let her know I was there, but then realised I had never caught up to a swimmer before in a Tri and didn’t really know what to do….and I then realised who I just tapped the feet of and forgot how many lengths I had done and it really put me off my swim. Ginny then had to tap my feet and I felt terrible. I let her past but once I relaxed back into the swim I caught her again. I didn’t dare tap again so just swam a bit behind her for the rest of the distance.
I ran out to my bike after the swim, and felt good on the ride. It really wasn’t that bad cycling in the rain. It didn’t feel slippery and I took the corners a lot slower than normal but really enjoyed it. I was pleased with how I dealt with the hills. I finished the bike a lot quicker than I was hoping for.
After I racked the bike, I started heading out of transition onto the run and struggled badly with my breathing. I was trying to run up the hill, wave and smile to the crowd, take my inhaler all at the same time as getting my photo taken. It wasn’t a great start to the run. I will make sure at my next triathlon to take a few puffs of my inhaler before leaving transition.
I felt SO slow on the run, and as a lot of the people I knew from the swim waves had passed me on the bike I was convinced I was the only one left out on the course.
However finally the finish line was in sight and the cheer from everyone supporting was fantastic. What a well supported event it was. Everyone from the marshals who stood in the rain for hours to the people who were just watching,we just absolutely fantastic.
I collected my medal to the biggest cheer I have ever had and that made me feel very proud.
My final times were –
Swim – 11:59
Bike – 45:21
Run – 40:13
total time of 1:39:56.
Full set of results here
My target before the race was 1:40:00 so was really chuffed. I also learnt a lot from this race and will be much more confident going forward.
Despite the rain it was an amazing day.
Location – Beccles Lido, Puddingmoor, Beccles NR34 9PL
Type – Pool Swim (18 laps), cycle on public roads (1 lap) and a run on public paths and off road (1 lap)
Entry Fee – £40 (£35 with BTF* membership)
Medal – Yes and age group trophies
Goody bag – Yes. Beccles Triathlon branded scarf, water bottle and temporary tattoo. A home made flap jack and some Big Skies Food Company brittle. A Beccles Triathlon swimming cap and last but not least a puncture repair kit.
Event facilities – Showers, toilets, lockers, free parking, Food and drink. Tri-harder, TORQ and Charming Rewards stalls. Massage tent
Chip timed – Yes
Start Type – Swim waves of 8 people, based on time. Slowest to fastest time. Females and males competing at same time.
Would I do this event again? – Yes
Overall Score – 10/10
Summary Registration was fantastic, amazing spectators, great goody bag and medal. Very friendly event.