Bristol Triathlon 2103 Race report

After ten hours sleep I’m feeling a little more refreshed this morning, even if I’m covered with cuts and bruises.
That was the roughest race swim I’ve been in for a long time, for a women’s only race there was nothing ladylike about it ! It reminded me of Water Polo days. During the race I was kicked, punched, ducked all deliberate and a first I was sworn at mid race.
Where I was punched I have a slightly sore red & bruised cheek,  a cut and bruise around my wrist where I got tangled in the middle orange buoy netting and my right foot was scratched the length of sole by finger nails of another swimmer – what must her wetsuit look like, a black doilies with puncture marks ?
I did offer a little retaliation ducking of the foul-mouthed swimmer. However I clocked 26minutes exiting the pontoon so improved time on last years time and came out feeling OK effort wise. There was a bit of satisfaction as I beat the foul mouth punching swimmer out of the water in the end.
The bike was just brutal as the wind was gusting at force 8-9 (40 to 60mph), it swirled around the Avon gouge and buffeted us from all directions. Again I managed a few minutes faster than last year in worse conditions.
Then I the wheels fell off and I wilted and died on the run at around 8k. The run seemed longer than last year and another competitor clocked 5.4k per lap on his Garmin, it was a 2 lap race. Transition was longer and so we had extra run distance from swim exit along the dockside and  just getting in and out of a bigger more chaotic transition area took longer. The run is semi trail which has some undulations and a ramps which knocks you out of your stride. Great views of the Clifton Suspension bridge as you run underneath it four times.
So was it bad pacing – too fast on swim & bike?, battling with competitors and weather? or lack of run fitness that slowed me down ?
I’m flip flopping between disappointment and pleased in faster swim & bike times compared to last year in rougher conditions. Running is my nemesis but disappointed/mad at myself that I was 8 minutes slower than last year and probably one of my slowest 10K’s for a long time. I’m never fast but usually manage to hold under the hour in tri’s and trail races.
Or do I put this aside and put it down as a big training session for race experience, transitions ( that were about 200m longer and more chaotic than last year), pacing, getting stuck-in to hold my line and practise nutrition etc. ? And get on to focus on the middle distance events – Henley ?
Any thoughts ? my coach says is he happy with my effort under the circumstance pointing out its not all about time,  I came away relatively injury free  so to be pleased with  how I went about the race and that in the days to come I should also be pleased. I still got a top 10 finish in 7th for age group so not all bad.
I will be back for 2014 as determined to duck under the 3 hour mark on this course  🙂

Official results are up on website and making me feel slightly better, for example the first male in standard distance was plus 8 minutes compared to 2012 results and first female was plus 5 minutes so my plus 3 minutes not too shabby ! Still annoyed by my run though.

My break down was actually 22nd / 46 females, 5th not 7th in age group, even if only ten racing, with 3rd fastest swim, 4th fastest bike and slowest run ( if I had last years time would have been 4th, but thats history, a different day, course, competitors and conditions).

Bristol Tri  Finisher



  1. Hey, this is Jen at Thorlo. Pat yourself on the back — it sounds like it was a tough race. And you also made improvements, so give yourself credit for those as well! If it were easy, everyone would do it! Please email me at sometime if you ever need help with anything, especially foot protection/blister prevention 😉

    • Thanks for your encouraging comments Jen 🙂 shame foot protection not allowed in the swim.
      I do have one pair of bloody socks from Sunday due to a nail gouge scratch in the sole of my right foot, do you do red socks ?!

  2. It was in very tough conditions in every sense which is more draining plus you were going faster than last year so it was a great performance and no doubt you’ll be stronger for it and will smash that barrier next year for sure 🙂

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