It was about 3 degrees here today, add in the wind, being wet and the trisuit and I'd like to think it was below zero...sounds better anyway :)
Lined up for the start around 12noon, it was so cold that most (all but 3 I could see) racers were taking advantage of the poolside "changing tents", in they went in their swimming gear, out they came covered in thermals, gloves and hats. I think in reflection gloves would have helped...especially when I was stuck in T2 with my helmet on...thanks to the marshals for helping me out.
Swim went well, I got to lead out due to my fastest entry time which was nice having clear water...until about 550m in where I quickly encountered the previous heat which had some stragglers. Unfortunately I couldn't afford to wait until the end of the lane so just snuck past each of the swimmers I met, hope I didn't cause them any trouble but I tried my best to get by unnoticed.
T1 was ok, slower than I wanted mainly due to the cold and the unswept route into transition.
Once on my bike though I got into the rhythm and started to work the first lap. There is a slight 4km downhill on each lap which was great to get the speed up, plus a total of 3 turn arounds on each lap which made spotting where my competition was easy. After the swim I had about 80 seconds on second place so I knew where to look on lap 1, it looked like I'd managed to gain another 20 seconds or so on lap one so I put the hammer down a bit more come lap two. That said the cold had started to get to my face, chest and hands so I started to feel a bit chilly, no matter I kept the cadence up and had put in a solid 2.5 minute gap on second place come T2. Time wise I was on track for under an hour but a dwindled 60 seconds or so getting marshal assistance with my helmet, realising this I sped into my trainers and off onto the run course.
Was amazed by the support on the 5km, everyone I passed from the earlier heats slowed down and cheered me past, some of the local cyclists road with me shouting support and keeping me relaxed as I ran. Everyone from my residence had come out in force to cheer me on and it really does help when your friends are there
A new best 5km time by 3 minutes plus a new course record quickly made me forget the cold...and the fact it is only March. Great first race and presume this means the training seems to be working!