Rachel - A battle for the podium at the Up The Creek Triathlon

Tuesday, 11 June 2013  |  Admin

Up the Creek Sprint – June9th 2013

A day after the TT Champs, I drove down to Kilrush (accompanied by my mom, aunt and uncle) to compete in the Up the Creek Sprint Triathlon. Having finished second in Kilrush in 2012, I was hopeful that I could get another podium finish. The wonderful weather continued, with all participants greeted by beaming sunshine.

After registering, I spent some time readying my bike. Again, my front wheel was proving troublesome but, luckily, my friend Paul gave me his spare race wheel to use. I took a quick spin up the road to check all the gears and cruised down to transition. Our spots were numbered so I found “80” and racked my bike. There was a huge crew from Limerick Tri Club so there were loads of people to talk to as we prepared. Quite a few people congratulated me on yesterday’s TT victory, which was a nice confidence booster.We strolled down to the far end of the marina and had the customary race briefing. Everyone was scrambling to find shade and waited until the last possible second to put on their wetsuits. I zipped up, put on my two hats and goggles and took a gel.

The water was veryrefreshing as I swam from the pontoon out to the start buoys. When thehorn sounded at around 1:45, the mayhem started.

I had a solid swim, exiting the water in 12:30. I didn’t really draft off anybody but was in close proximity to other people the whole time. There was an exit ramp, which was quite slippery and led to the road and nearby transition. I dropped my hat and goggles during the short run and had to double back for them. I got to my bike soon enough, stripped off my wetsuit, put on my sunglasses and helmet… and headed for the mount line.


The bike route was 21km with an out-and-back section and slight detour at the end along the coast. There were a few climbs where I had to get out of the saddle. I passed a lot of people, including all but one of the women,and got back to T2 after 36:59, not my strongest time for the distance. I was informed that I was around 30 seconds down on the lead female at that stage so Iset off chasing. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make up the deficit. I got closer and closer but couldn’t close the gap fully, finishing the run in 19:32. My finishing time was 1:11:47, 25 seconds down on first place.


Although I was disappointed not to get the win, I knew I had given all I could. My swim and transitions were where the gap opened up, as my bike and run splits were faster than the winner. So I definitely need to do some work in the open water and on mounting my bike at speed. There is plenty of room for improvement.



I had a great time at the finish line chatting to all  the other competitors. I had lots of friends racing and they all put in great times in the sun. In fact, a few of us dipped our legs back in the water for recovery. Congratulations to the organizers and all the participants on such a fantastic race. And thank you to all the spectators for their enthusiastic support. It’s now time to rest and eat… but I’ll be back training tomorrow.

Next up, Hell of the West.

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