Rachel - Tri an Mhi National Middle Distance Championships
Wednesday, 22 May 2013 | Admin
Tri an Mhi Race Report – May 18th 2013
Tri an Mhi hosted the National Middle Distance Championships last Saturday. The cold weather during the preceding week meant that is was a possibility that the swim would be cancelled. Nobody wanted a duathlon to take place so it was a welcome relief when we were told to put on our wetsuits. The route was cut from 1900m to 800m and a strict time limit was enforced for safety. After all, May weather in Ireland is freezing!
Slow T1 times were the order of the day as everyone wrapped up for the bike. I pulled on socks and a jacket and headed out onto the 94km route. The course itself was tough and undulating. A few technical turns and an uneven road surface meant that I had to keep my eyes up and concentration high. I raced hard and passed a few other women but was later passed by the same competitors. I snacked on some cereal bars and dried fruit and was happy that the rain stayed away for the whole first lap. It certainly poured on the second lap though. My 2:56 split was strong butsomething I can improve on. Maintaining higher wattage on descents and powering through corners are things that could shave time for me in the future. GarminForerunner 910XT - Bike - http://connect.garmin.com/activity/314715772
My T2 was quick enough as I onlyhad to peel off my soaking jacket. I decided to run only in my tri-suit as I figured I’d warm up on my own two feet. The half-marathon course was challenging with very few flat stretches. I got into a rhythm fairly quickly and concentrated on keeping an even pace. After all, 21km is a long way to go and I didn’t want to go out too hard and suffer later. I took some gels as I negotiated the two laps but was unable to make up significant time on the raceleaders with my 1:41 split. Still, I gave it my all and was very happy to cross the finish line in 5th place. GarminForerunner 910XT - Run - http://connect.garmin.com/activity/314715782
Overall, the race was enjoyable yet demanding. The cold, wet weather posed a challenge to many as about 20% of the field registered DNFs. As it was only my second ever half-ironman, it was a relatively new experience going at race pace for 4:56.
I must extend a big congratulations to my fellow female competitors,whose blistering race times are something I will continue to work towards. My fellow Limerick Tri Club members also deserve acknowledgement for their gritty efforts. Although triathlon is an individual sport, I love the camaraderie with my club-mates and really appreciate their company and positivity on race day. Lastly, a special thank you must be offered to the organizers and marshalls as they did a tremendous job of running a safe and enjoyable race. On-course encouragement, finish line food and cozy blankets were highly valued by every competitor.