Herts and Essex Tri Super Series: Hoddesdon Aquathlon

A summers evening on the 19th June saw round 2 of the new Hertfordshire and Essex Triathlon Super Series underway. As a complete contrast to the last grand prix race a few days prior at Southend, the lake at the Lee Valley Whitewater Centre was clear, warm and welcoming. A good portion of athletes opted to complete the 500m swim without a wetsuit and save time in transition before running a flat and fast 5.5km course around the park.

ELT once again flooded the top half of the table and were the highest scoring team with impressive performances from Tomi Owoborode, Graeme Bell, Simon Needle, Lawrence Shafier, Neill Whittaker and Andy Gray with Liam O’Mahoney claiming second and Chris Tait third on the podium in times under 30 minutes. ELT now sit third in the super series with five more events to go through the year. Next up is the transitionless triathlon on Sat 30th June and Sun 1st July.

A big thank you to Hoddesdon Triathlon Club for making this event happen with encouraging volunteers and for providing an appetising selection of savouries and cakes to devour after the race!

Super Series Race Information: https://www.facebook.com/groups/HETSS/

Grand Prix Round 4 – The Southend Triathlon

Round 4 of the ELT Grand Prix saw 27 ELT’ers take on the Southend Sprint Triathlon and it was a bit of a gloomy day, with a light drizzle in the morning and the winds picking up in strength during the day. Upon arriving at registration there was a good atmosphere with lots of excited first time athletes and music playing in the background. The crowds were starting to come together on the beach front to watch the swimmers go off and battle the sea.

Unusually for a triathlon the first wave of athletes started at 2pm, a stark difference to the usual 7am starts. This meant having to re-think pre race nutrition but it did result in a cheeky lay in!

The swim course was a 750m out and back sea swim and with the winds picking up, it would have been a great day for surfing. We set off in waves of approximately 50 competitors and each wave had a wide range of experienced athletes which meant very quickly the competitors were well spread out. The high waves meant sighting was tricky and if you mis-timed it you got a face full of water and were pushed off course regularly.

The bike course was 6 laps of a straight out and back closed road. It was pretty much flat, but going away from transition there was a nasty and consistent headwind. At points it felt as though you were cycling through treacle. A slight crosswind kept you on your toes as it blew you and everyone else from one side of the road to another. However, on the way back to transition it proved to be a nice tail wind and helped bump the average speed up!

The run course was 3 laps around a fairly flat and unexciting local park and once again there was a headwind on the back straight. Coming back into the final stretch all athletes were welcomed by a well supported finish line which was a great way to end the race.

 

ELT dominated this race with 5 athletes in the top 20. A number of ELT’ers came 1st in their age group showing the strength and depth of triathlon talent in our club. We also had several people complete their first ever triathlon, which is made even more impressive with the tough conditions. Furthermore thanks to those who came and supported the event from the sidelines, this was a huge motivator!

The full results can be found here: https://www.southendtriathlon.com/results/

The next ELT Grandprix is at the Maldon Triathlon (The Olympic Distance) on the 22nd July, sign up here: http://www.dengieevents.co.uk/the-maldon-triathlon/4543261096

Grand Prix Round 3 – Nuffield Health Sprint Triathlon

On Sunday the 20th May, Eton Dorney Lake played host to over a 1000 competitors racing at the Nuffield Health Sprint Triathlon. This was round 3 of the ELT Grand Prix and was the first sprint triathlon of the series. We had 9 athletes in total, with 5 racing in the ITU Qualifier and 4 in the regular age group.

It was to be a warm day with the lake temperature reaching a toasty 18 degrees making for an optional wet-suit swim.

For those who don’t know, ITU qualifier is an opportunity for you to earn a place on the GB Age Group team and represent GB at the World Championships. Furthermore, the qualifier was a draft-legal event meaning you can draft on the bike, working together with other competitors.

The man made rowing lake is the perfect venue for your first open water swim, it is clear, no debris and the course is a rectangle shape making it easy for sighting and seeing where you are going. Tomi Owoborode, one of ELT’s newest members, showed his swimming prowess by completing the  750m course in 10:38 coming out of the water 2nd in his wave and having the 12th quickest swim of the day. Alison Trauttmansdorff-Weinsberg led the swim for the ELT’s women competition completing it in 15:42.

The bike course was a flat and fast 4 lap course with a couple of long corners. Going out away from transition there was a nice tail wind but coming on the way back there was a head wind which seemed to sap all strength from your legs, not easy to do 4 times! For those who were doing the draft legal event it was important to get into a good group and start working together to get around quickest and it was Daniel Fish who managed this finishing in 32:33. Once again, Alison put in a solid effort to complete the 21km bike course in 37:58.

The run was a straight out and back which added a mental challenge to the run as you could see all the competitors in front of you and how far you still had to run. The rising heat also played a part making it even more difficult for the competitors particularly in the later waves. Alison took a clean sweep for the women storming home to finish the 5km run in 22:50 whilst it was Daniel Fish who took it for the men in 19:27.

 

Women’s Results

Alison Trauttmansdorff-Weinsberg – 1:19.09
Eva Carrington – 1:33.20
Jessica Frost – 1:34.03

 

 

 

 


Men’s Results

Liam O’mahoney – 1:06.49
Daniel Fish – 1:07.36
Tomi Owoborode – 1:08.15

 

 

 

 

Finally, a massive well done to Tomi Owoborode, Andrew Gray, and Eva Carrington who put in some fantastic efforts and completed their first open water triathlon. It’s great to see new people coming into the sport and doing so well.

Full results can be found here and the round 4 of the Grand Prix is on the 17th June at Southend Triathlon.

 

Dragonslayer 2018

East London Triathetes hosted the Dragonslayer duathlon (3 mile run, 15 mile bike, 2 mile run) at the Lee Valley Velopark on Sunday 13th May.

This is a challenging annual event for both seasoned athletes honing their race fitness at the start of the triathlon season and those new to the sport competing in their first race alike.

A group of volunteers from our club swapped racing for marshalling, chip timing, registering, photgraphing and managing transition zones under the instruction of our excellent Race Director, Pete Dyer, to deliver a smooth and fun race for the competitors.

Out of 79 competitors in various age categories including para-athletes the overall winners were Milan Misak, Debbie Clark and Gary Donald with the fastest finisher completing the undulating and exposed course in 01:08:28.

Congratulations to our determined ELT competitors Isabelle Faure and Gayle Hall who finished 2nd and 3rd in their age categories, and to Billy Reed and Andrew Gray and for their efforts finishing the race.

Full results may be found at: https://www.britishtriathlon.org/events/results/velopark-elt-dragonslayer-3m—15m—2m-duathlon_8768

Event photos may be found at: https://flic.kr/s/aHskxZpJ1t

Grand Prix Round 2 – St. Neots Triathlon

Round 2 of the Grand Prix saw ELT taking on the St. Neots Triathlon (Olympic Distance), which was actually held at Grafham Waters. ELT was well represented across several age groups with 10 competitors trying to rack up some early Grand Prix points.

The Water temperature was a cool 13.9-degree Celsius. No surprise given the recent turn in the weather and the race still being early in the season. With several hundred people per wave, the swim got quite rough with a few people receiving elbows to the face. James Swift dominated the swim for the men completing the 1500m in just over 23 minutes. Sarah Burns took an early lead in the women’s ELT competition with a 29-minute swim.

 

The bike course was fairly flat with a couple of short and sharp hills just to throw you off your rhythm. Ben Thomson put a huge effort in on the bike finishing the 37km in just 57 minutes and 24 seconds. Ali Trauttmansdorff started to real Sarah back in with a 70-minute bike finishing the bike split just 30 seconds ahead of Sarah.

The run was mixed terrain with concrete, grass, gravel, and woodland to be covered over the 10km course. Dan Fish felt strong off the bike and got quickly into a good stride and pace until disaster struck! Having not practised his full race nutrition since last year, Dan’s guts started to let him down and he needed to make two emergency stops or face doing a Paula Radcliffe! He lost several minutes there and did not feel comfortable with any intensity on the run. If you haven’t practised your nutrition plan in training yet, go do it now.

Making up for a slow swim, Ben Thomson was flying off the bike and pushed hard on the run finishing with a sub 39-minute run and Ali Trauttmansdorff powering ahead on dodgy hamstrings to finish the run in 48 minutes.

Graeme Bell had the best Transitions off the day beating everyone else in T1 and T2. With Graeme only finishing 30 seconds ahead of Lawrence Shafier, it proves that spending time training for Transitions, the fourth discipline, will pay dividends on race day.

A big well done to everyone that took part. The full race results can be found here.

Round 3 of the Grand Prix is Nuffield Health Super Sprint at Eton Dorney on the 20th May.

Herts and Essex Tri Super Series: Redbridge Duathlon

It was shaping up to be a scorching hot day for the inaugural event of the Herts and Essex Tri Super Series events. The series was created in the hope of bar increasing participation in multi-sport events and create healthy competition between local clubs.

The first race, hosted by Tri sport Epping, was a duathlon at Redbridge cycling centre a.k.a hog hill. The format was a 4K run followed by an 18k bike and for finishing with a final 2k Run. 5 members of ELT had decided to give this one a crack and all turned up with good spirits.

After a quick scope of the course, discussion on the best spots for transition, and a short warm-up; we were ready for the 9am start.

And they were off! Dan Fish and a Havering Tri runner took an early lead down the hill of the first corner Breaking away from the pack. Neill Whittaker settled into a quick and steady pace not far behind shortly followed by Steve Palmer.

If you haven’t been to Hog Hill, it has a has a fairly short but steep hill (the hoggenberg) on the circuit that truly disrupts all rhythm and kicks up your heart rate several percentage points! This made settling into a steady pace almost impossible and a few people got caught out on the first lap.

After two laps of running Dan Fish pulled into Transition in 1st place. Having thought about transition tactics earlier, he was out on the bike in a short time trying to distance himself on the bike.

But the distance was not to be held for long… Just as Dan was coming over the crest of the hill on his second lap he passed by the ‘mountain goat’ Neill who sped by and really started to put some ground between him and the rest of the competition.

The heat was really beginning to pick up and with 9 laps on the bike, the hoggenberg started to split the entire field. However, Dave Barrat and Paul Dominguez were flying past all of the other clubs making for an excellent bike split.

The final run approached and after a quick transition, a shake out of the legs it was time for the last dash to finish line.

After Neill took the early lead he stayed there and romped home for first place. Dan come home in 6th after being pipped to the line over the final hill. Steve, Paul and Dave all finished strong finishing in 10th, 16th and 17th respectively.

This was a great result for ELT with all those who were racing finishing in the top 20.

Well done all, on to the next race!

ELT Winter Warmer Duathlon

Once again ELT hosted another fantastic event at the Lee Valley Velo park, this time the Winter Warmer Duathlon. We had over 65 competitors brave the fierce winds and the icy cold weather to complete a 2 lap run, 10 lap bike, and a final 1 lap run course.

 
Under the superb leadership of Peter Dyer the ELT Volunteers were highly organised and extremely efficient setting up the course. It was good to see a mixture of first time and experienced volunteers turn up to make sure all the competitors had a good event.
With a constant headwind on the back straight, each lap took its toll on our competitors requiring them to dig deep and get as aerodynamic as possible to avoid being overly punished by the conditions.

A big congratulations to all of our podium finishers, the full results will be found on the veloduathlon park soon.

Thank you to both participants and volunteers that turned up on the day, see you all in May for the Dragonslayer!

The Highwaymen’s Hoard

Last weekend ELT ran it’s very own Orienteering Fitness challenge dubbed the ‘Highwaymen’s Hoard’. We had a great turnout from competitors, helpers and our supporters. It was nice to see lots of new faces too!

We met at High Beech tea hut and tested our knowledge of the forest and map reading skills in search of locations specified by grid references. We participated either on our own or in teams and both on bike or by foot. The choice, along with the route, was ours.

In the end, experience of the forest showed as our winners David Longstaff and Isabelle Schelcher trailed away managing to find 9/10 locations within the time limit. James Swift and Ali Wardle paired up and also found 9/10 locations but couldn’t keep track of time and narrowly lost out through time penalties. It was a tie in third between Pete and Sam Bitten, Angela Rouse and Janet Bywater and Alex Ward. Well done to everyone who competed.

For those of you who missed out or are more fair weather athletes, we plan to try another in the summer!

Chris

ELT Vice Chair

ELT Hill Challenge 2017

An AMAZING turnout this morning for the legend known only as the ELT Hill Challenge. It may have been a little cool but the competition was feisty and in good spirit.


We arrived 09:00 at the Tea Hut for schedule and briefing were I quickly realised I should have taken a bigger piece of paper as 27 (yes, twenty seven) awesome East London Triathletes rocked up ready for battle. Each blasted up Mott Street in 30sec intervals for a 2km brutal but beautiful climb.

After a quick change a we had a gentle jog to the bottom of Church Road, a quick photo and then the mass start. A 1.2k sprint up a 39m elevation was certainly a way to build an appetite! Warm clothes donned and then off to the Bikers Hut for well deserved hot food and drink.

A BIG thank you to organisers, supporters and all who took part. Awesome.

Olympic Distance Club Champs

 

Wow, what a morning.

Ive competed on numerous occasions at Rutland Water, but never have I seen it as beautiful as it was last Saturday. This was the stage for the Dambuster and from an ELT perspective the club champs at Olympic Distance. A good turnout to with some of the club setting up camp the night before while others chose the graveyard Uber shift opting to take advantage of the M11 and A14 at 4am.

There was a relaxed feel on arrival with some 500 competitors registered. Split down into three waves, each set off, one every ten minutes, rudely awaking the calm, sparkling waters, towards the distant orange buoy signalling the first of three turns. It seemed like an eternity to get there, but once reached we knew we were only one more turn from home, but once around that my focus was grabbed by the newly instated water park. It was only due to the early hour and therefore closure that I didn’t veer off for the to enjoy the slides and floating icebergs.

It got hotter during the bike although I find you never really feel it given the self-generating wind machine a triathlete tends to become when on two wheels. Thus by the time you get to the run you’ve half forgotten how hot it is and then boom you get a wake up call a couple of km in. Thankfully the marshalls were out in force armed with water, high 5 (other energy drinks are available) and a variety of gels, bars, bananas to push you over the line. Note to self, make sure you listen to what the marshalls are giving out as pouring high5 over your head doesn’t cool you down or improve aerobic efficiency.

Crossing the line, breath back and heart rate returning to normal, the free beer was a welcome sight as was the cooling waters to sooth the aching limbs and provide the perfect setting to gas with clubmates about the race, tactics, final positions and how glad we were to have finished before the mercury rose further.

By the time the awards ceremony had begun the temperature was up to 29 degrees and there were still some poor souls out there. Meanwhile as a club we were justly feeling pretty pleased with ourselves,  enjoying the moment with possibly our biggest medal haul of recent memory, with an Age group 1st (Sarah Burns) two 2nds (Lawrence Shafier and Simon Laver) and a third (James Swift). It was great to hear the club being called out so many times and hearing the cheers from all those that stayed. As well as the medallists, there were great performances all around from ELT including an Olympic debut from Alistair X, and as for the club champs, Sarah Burns and Simon Laver took home the honours.

Great to see a good turnout and positive competition, but as ever, there is always room for more, especially you ELT ladies, so roll up and get involved in the next Olympic grand prix race on 6th August and then 20th August for HIM distance.