The plan had always been to race Blenheim on June 6th but race entry issues (ie the organisers letting in a whole load of age groupers) meant I remained on the "waiting list" all the way until race morning. As a substitute Blair got me an entry (with many thanks to Andy Turnbull) to the Stirling sprint tri.
Race was great, strong swim (8.29 750m), smashed through T1 which was nice after spending all of last season huffing and puffing between swim-bike. Bike course was cracking, flat as a pancake with a few twists and turns in the middle and a nice ascent/descent at the end. Had the tri bars on the S2 so could get into a decent TT position, was nice to hold on to my 30 second swim buffer over the bike course and out onto the run.
Run was solid, nice hill each of the two laps so did my best to work that, managed to hold onto the lead until around 3.5km in when I was passed by Rory Downie. Tried to hold on for a few hundred meters but lost touch on an incline. In my head I could have put it all out and stayed with him but I'm trying to save those extra gears for Sunday.
Sunday is the Windsor triathlon, a pretty legendary British race that I've done for the past 2 years, this year being my 3rd. I always get to crash with my main man Mark Yeoman which is worth the trip in itself, we always manage to entertain ourselves even if its just Mark slagging me off for having a massive head. So should be the funnest race of the year and probably the one I'm most looking forward to. The course is great, an out/back swim in the Thames which should be too crazy, I lead out last year by quite a margin though no doubt guys will be a little more wary to let me go off the front this year. The bike is a 1 lap 42km course with no technical sections but some nice drags, hopefully we can make the break stay away this year and the run is a 3 lap technical course through Windsor itself. Technical in that there are cobbled sections, pedestrians to dodge, a killer hill up to the castle on each lap and plenty of turns and dead turns to contend with. Last year I crawled around the course in about 43 minutes which was my slowest 10km of the year...in fact the slowest 10km I've ever done ever. Hence the goal this year is to go faster! Not too big of a task but as I learned in Strathclyde anything can happen in triathlon.
Will post again before the race but I imagine my race report will come as I am making the train journey back to Scotland on Monday. Currently I am on the train south, free wifi making the 9 hour journey a little better.
Once I get back to Scotland next week I'll be in my last 10 days at home, a scary thought. Last Thursday I finished university (and am anxiously awaiting my marks) and the next 6 months are occupied by foreign travel to racing and training. After Windsor I'm off to ITU Brasschaat in Belgium followed by altitude training in Chamonix France for 5 weeks. Then its the London triathlon, ITU Kelowna in Canada, the Vancouver triathlon, the LA Triathlon and the US Open triathlon in Dallas as the season finishes up in mid October. But more on that later...