This past weekend I did one of the Gatorade Eton Duathlon races, this is a series of 4 races, 1 each month form January to April, and not surprisingly held at Eton Dorney Lake.
The race was a sprint distance, consisting of 5km run, 20km bike & 5km run. All sounds simple and if I am honest that is what I thought and turned out to be a bit of a mistake.
Before I did this race, I knew it was going to be hard, well it would be if you try and do the best you can by pushing hard, but I think I slightly under estimated it.
I had a bit of a pre-race plan and that was to go reasonably hard in the first run, consolidate on the bike and then just run as hard as I could n the last run. In principal the was a decent enough plan. The reality was a little different.
The weather, was sunny and warm on arrival but on exiting the car it turned out it was very windy, and this was to play a major part in my race.
As usual with Votwo events the organisation was excellent, registration took about 30 seconds, and racking of the bike was equally simple.
I di da warm up, something I have learnt is a good idea as trying to race without one just isn’t a good idea!
Then it was off to the start line, a pre-race briefing and then ready for the start.
The run course was 2 laps of 2.5km, simple out and back. The countdown began and then we were off, I made an effort to not start too quickly, I soon found what felt like a good pace, and settled in for the run. There seemed to be plenty in front of more, and more importantly some behind me.
The first run finished in 24:23 which was quicker than anticipated, but felt ok, a steady change in transition and off onto the bike course. The bike course was 4 laps round the training lake, and the first thing I noticed was just how windy it was, and this meant that large sections of the lap were into a headwind. Infant on a few occasions the wind was picking up my front wheel as I had a 58mm deep section rim on, it must have been really bad for those with very deep section and disc wheels.
The bike was done in 36:28 which wasn’t too bad, an average speed of 20mph, another steady transition and off for the final run.
Heading out for the run I could feel that my energy levels were down a bit, I took it steady for the first lap and on the second lap concentrated on maintaining good technique hoping that this would keep the speed up, I was certainly feeling it.
The last run was done in around 25:40, unfortunately of some reason on the official results page, I am shown as a query with no time for my final run, no idea why I crossed the line and they took back the timing chip.
So overall, I think I had a time of just over 1hour 29 minutes, which whilst not brilliant wasn’t so bad as I have not trained for this type of event. I have another chance in April to have a go again as I going back to do event 4 in the series.
I have to say I was spent at the finish, I felt like I had suffered and certainly done the best I could on the day.
There were a couple of down sides to the day, firstly I forgot to put my watch into multi-sport mode, so I have the whole event as one run, certainly gives some impressive km splits!. Secondly somehow I lost my mini bike pump out of my jersey pocket, no idea how I managed that. As these are only minor things it just shows the day wasn’t too bad.
As I have said I am off to do this race again next month, yes it is hard, and yes I suffered and my Saturday night was spent basically dozing before admitting defeat and having an early night, but, I would say if you like running and cycling have a go you might just enjoy it.
If anyone is interested in what kit I used, well here it is:
Shoes: Asics Gel-Noosa Tri 9
Bike: Bianchi 928C with Zipp 60 wheels
Bike Shoe: Shimano road shoe