Race Report - The BRAT Birmingham Standard distance, 2014

Swim - 1 big lap 

Bike - 2 laps

Run - 4 laps

A very wet race!
I knew the weather was going to be bad, We were getting the tail end of Hurricane Bertha, but I didn’t expect it to rain so hard!
The rain started half way through the swim and didn’t really stop throughout the race, it was particularly bad during the bike.
But, it didn’t spoil my day like I thought it would and I actually think it helped me!

Once again, BRAT put on a fantastic event, the best event of the year!

The Swim

For this race, I took it easy at the start, I didn’t shoot off at top speed. I got myself into a nice pace with a nice rhythm and just got on with it.
I took a wide route to keep out of the way and I was soon passing people
On the last part of the lap I was in clear water behind the front pack with no one around me apart from someone drafting of the back of me. I was getting the occasional tap on the toes.
Getting out of the water I twisted off my garmin and put it in my mouth, pulled down my wetsuit and took off my hat and goggles on the run up to T1

T1

And again, I couldn’t get my feet out of my wetsuit
this time though, I think it was down to the HUGE timing chip!
suit off, garmin clipped to the bike, press lap, helmet on, shoes on and away we go.
This race I didnt leave my shoes clipped onto the bike because the exit from T1 was grass, easy to run on in cycle shoes.

Bike

The bike went like a dream! it felt fast and the rain didn’t bother me. I did take it very very slowly on the tight corners, I did hear that one guy came off and a 4x4 ran over his bike!
One difference with this ride was that I kept the gears low and the cadence high, it seemed to work well.
I had a great little race with one guy (bib 90) he overtook me, I overtook him and we were back and forth like that for the whole race. He eventually beat me over the line by about 2 minutes.
I managed to keep the rear water bottle attached! Although I didn’t use it (half-filled backup)
It was incredibly wet! The rain was hurting my face! And at one point I had to squint to keep the rain out of my eyes. A car drove past, through a puddle and I got the full force in the face! I did worry that I was going to lose a contact lens!
Again, I loved this ride, I had a huge grin on my face from start to finish.
Also I have a new chant to power me up the hills, I was shouting to myself “I’m the king of the hill, I’m the king of the hill” lol, awesome

T2

Rack bike, helmet off, Garmin off the bike, press lap and on with the running soaking wet and soggy running shoes! man they felt heavy

The Run

The first few laps of the run was weird, it felt like I couldn’t breath properly, not worryingly, but not quite right. It seemed to pass once I necked a gel.
The rain didn’t stop and the run didn’t get any easier, just wetter, but, I plugged through to the end.


Conclusion

I wandered over to the timing van and typed in my number
16th
eh!!! Seriously! no way! then the doubt started to enter my mind, had I ran all for laps?
a quick check on the garmin and yes, I had!

A new PB at 02:09:54

16th though, was not to be :( the 40+ age group started 10 minutes behind us and four people beat me, dropping me down to 22nd
but hang on!
22nd!!!!

AWESOME

Swim = 00:22:17
T1 = 00:01:56
Cycle = 01:05:00
T2 = 00:01:05
Run = 00:39:34
Total 02:09:54
22 OA (187)
15 AG (84)

Nutrition

Breakfast, Greek yogurt, granola, nuts and honey.

Pre race SIS gel

Bike, PHD Amino Drive BCAA (orange) + Torq Energy (orange) in around 600ml water. Split between two Camelbak podium bottles, one on the front, one on the back.

Run, Two torq gels, only used one on lap 2

post race rego shake.


Kit Used

Orca core trisuit
Garmin 910xt with quick fit kit and bike mount (multisport mode without transition)

2XU Z:1 wesuit
zoggs predator flex polarized goggles

Cervelo P3, Zipp firecrests
Front and rear mounted, 500ml bottles
Boardman team carbon helmet

Specialized Sport RD shoes

On cloud runner, garmin foot pod
blue seventy race belt (worn under wetsuit)

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Some pictures from my wonderful tri photographer anikotowers.com

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Anthony TowersComment