This Thursday saw the first Go Tri event of this seasons OW swimming at Cliff Lake Water Park near Kingsbury.
Last year for each race I talked a new Massey runner into giving Go Tri a try! This race was no exception with Anna and Virginia taking the plunge with Cathy having her second go.
Experienced racers James and Stuart, who like me had been working hard to improve their swimming, made up the Massey Super Six.
After pulling on wetsuits and sorting out transition there was little time to swim a warm up lap as the race starts at 7pm prompt.
At the two minute warning racers position themselves, novices and the nervous back and left – idiots (me) middle and nearer the front. This was a deliberate ploy as I decided I needed the proper washing machine effect to simulate a larger start that I would have in my next race.
As the hooter sounded the calm lake was turned into a foaming mass. I joined in the mele, beating my arms and legs violently against the water and I was away. Buffeted, punched and kicked by other racers we charged towards the first buoy.
My early effort affected how quickly I settled into a ‘smooth’ swim as I was struggling to gather my breath after taking a nasty kick to the … but it wasn’t long before the Titan and BRAT helpers hauled me the last metre out the water to my feet – closely followed by James who had clearly drafted in my wake to save energy and gain speed!
Having coated myself in more baby oil than a Chipendale stripper my wetsuit glided off me and with shoes on I was away, but my lead was short lived! I didn’t even make it to the gate before my slim lead was taken by James and he was off.
On dry land my HRM kicked in and the numbers confirmed what my panting told me – I was working hard… Very hard! I knew if I could top the hill before seeing other Massey runners I was home 2nd. However, only halfway up I spotted the beard!
I couldn’t afford to slacken my run pace as any dropping of speed and Stuart would be on me like a lion on an elderly bison… I hadn’t planned to be a snack! Seeing the person in front slow I dug deep, sending my HRM demented I chased them down knowing that each step would see me finish before Stuart. Once the short sharp hill was over the joyous decent downhill followed and I picked up speed.
Entering the final few hundred metres I passed Anna and Virginia heading out on their run. I knew I was being tracked but no long shadow of another runner passed my feet, no sound of encouragement from the ladies to others meant I knew that today would be my day.
The flags fluttered for the finish and I strode on to pant over the line 2 seconds in front of Stuart, it looks like his swimming lessons and practice are really paying off.
As I tried to gather my breath super supporters Nicky and Darren came over to cheer others home. In no time Virginia stormed in, clearly the joy of being out of a massive wetsuit inspired her to run and chase down others. Anna and Cathy followed soon after.
These are great little races that give a taste of the fun of OW Triathlons, so anyone who can swim and wants to join the fun speak to me as I need to involve more newbies at further races.