Race Report - The Newcastle triathlon

This was my first Olympic Distance Race

The Newcastle Triathlon, it was supposed to be in Newcastle, with the swim in the Tyne! but at last minute it was relocated further north to the Woodhorn Museum, which is a shame, for me it took some of the magic away from the race.

But, it was still a good venue, a nice lake and a coastal ride.

On to the race report!

First things first, if you are going to travel 225 miles to get to a race, make sure you get to the hotel the night before and early enough to get some quality sleep.

Don’t get there late, then sit down for a big meal and a large glass of wine, only to get to bed for 11:30 then get up again at 5:00. A recipe for disaster!

I felt like crap in the morning. I had a head ache, I felt like I was on the verge of crapping myself! I really wasn’t up for it. The thought of quitting entered my head several times!

It was a warm morning, overcast with light wind

The race briefing really dragged on! And I didn’t have my wetsuit on, so I need to dash back quickly to the van to suit up


However, once I hit the water, I started to feel better. I still didn’t push though, I was going to complete the race, but take it easy.

Once the race started though, I got into a comfortable rhythm and I found I was still passing people, so, I pushed on a little harder.

I’m the end, the swim was good, I was on the tail end of the front pack, so I was in my own water with no one kicking me in the face ;)

I used my goggles this time and not my mask, perfect! I’m never using the mask again!

I exited the water 39th place in 00:25.24 minutes


It was quite a long run up to T1 and one thing I did differently this time and it worked, was to first take off the garmin, grip it with my teeth while I pull down my wetsuit, then put it back on before taking off my goggles and swim cap. Once I got into transition I fannied around for some reason, I have no idea what I was doing in there for so long.

I exited T1 in 52nd place in 00:01:26 minutes


Hmm, the bike, my weakest disapline.

The Garmin, I pressed stop again instead of lap! So I have no data for the ride.

There is always some drama for me on the bike, this time it was my shoes! I had them clipped into the bike as usual, but for some reason this time, I managed to push the tongues in, so they were squashed up in my toes L Halfway round I tried to pull the tongues back out, as I couldn’t really feel my toes! I managed one, but I just couldn’t get a grip on the other to pull it out. I didn’t want to stop.

The course was two laps on public roads with a few roundabouts and junctions to negotiate.

Some of the roads were shocking! At one point of the course I couldn’t see as the vibrations were so bad! So bad in fact that I lost my rear water bottle.

There was a small section of country road with some twisty corners, one of which I had a huge sideways slide! Awesome, I was laughing my head off. The only piece of excitement for an otherwise boring ride. I didn’t even get to see the sea as it was so foggy L

My neck was really killing me on this ride, which doesn’t normally happen, I don’t know what was different.

I really need to sort out my cycling, I’m slow. I think I need to be able to see my garmin so that I can at least see how I’m doing.

Maybe a power meter would be good too ;)

Also, I must sort my gears out!!!!! I can’t get the lowest gear at the moment, I suspect the cables have stretched a little.

I finished the bike in 68th place in 01:22:01 minutes


I couldn’t get my feet out of my bloody shoes! So last minute I decided to leave them on and just unclip. I was slow to get to the rack trying to run in my shoes.

When I got to my rack, I had to move two bikes!!! They had both racked so badly that they left no room for my bike. Also one guy had a huge box full of crap by his bike, transition was supposed to be clutter free with no boxes.

Anyway, racked, running shoes on and away.

At this point I noticed I had stopped my Garmin, restarted and running.

I exited T2 in 96th place! in 00:01:14 minutes


The run started well, I didn’t rush off too hard and eased my way into it.

I was passing quite a few people from the get go.

It was 3 laps around the lake, so I decided to neck on gel lap 1 and the second lap 2.

Straight away I could feel that my shoes were rubbing and by the end of the race my feet were a mess! Raw skin on the knuckles on my big toes L

There was a lot of confusion at the end of lap 1 with people coming from 3 directions and the marshals not really directing people very well, it confused me and I almost ran in the wrong direction. It was the same with the finish chute, not clear at all.

So, the run was good and I finished 49th with a run time of 00:42:30


Total race time 02:32:35, not too bad for my first attempt

I need to sort my running shoes, cycling shoes and transitions and cycling, so plenty to work on.

In the end, I enjoyed the race. It would have been nice if it was in the city centre as originally planned, but, hey ho, on to the next race :D


Kit used

Orca core trisuit – The pad was chafing a little

2XU Z:1 wetsuit

Zoggs predator flex polarized goggles – sooooo much better than my mask

Garmin 910xt

Cervelo P3, Zipp firecrests

Front and rear mounted, 500ml bottles

Boardman team carbon helmet

Specialized Sport RD shoes

Blue seventy race belt

Newton MV2 running shoes with elastic laces – tore my poor feet to shreds


Breakfast, water, bounce (red) and half pretzel

Bike - 1 SIS Go electrolyte mixed 500ml, shared between front and rear bottles

I lost the rear bottle and emptied the front.

Run - 2 torq gels, lap one and two with a small cup of water at end of lap 2

All seemed fine


No drinking the night before!

5 hours sleep is stupid!

I premixed the SIS Go in a protien shaker bottle before filling the water bottles, perfect consistency

Race briefings drag, get your wetsuit on before the briefing

Load the back pockets of my trisuit with the run gels right from the start

The goggles were fine, masks are rubbish

taking the garmin off before the wetsuit worked a treat

My small blue microfiber towel is great in transition

Talc in cycle and running shoes is good

I need to either modify my cycling shoes, or buy some proper triathlon shoes

Investigate the rubbing with the MV2’s maybe adjust the lacing

Consider a quick mount kit for the Garmin

Consider a better cage for the rear bottle or buy an xlab torpedo


Work on transition efficiency

Anthony TowersComment