In 2014, I decided to have a go at an Olympic distance triathlon. I entered the Hever Castle event, which is part of the Castle Triathlon Series. It’s a fantastic course which kicks off with a 1500m open water lake and river swim, followed by a 40k cycle and a 10k run. As a regular swimmer, I was swim fit but I had only started training for the cycle and run about six weeks before the race. Considering that I did most of my cycle training on a hybrid and only got my road bike a week before the race, I was more than happy with my finish time of 3:08:26.
I had to miss out on the race in 2015 due to an ill-timed flu bug, so I entered again for September 2016. Once again my cycling and running training had been at best sporadic over the summer, but with the 28th September marked in my diary, I was determined not to miss it again. With less than ten days to go, I landed a rather nice four-day shoot in Cannes. Suffice to say, while the job was very welcome, it wasn’t the greatest way to prep the last week of training for a #triathlon. To top it all, my flight back was severely delayed which meant I didn’t get back home till 3.00am on Saturday morning.
And so the day arrived. After an early morning call and a belly full of porridge, I was joined by my Tri buddy, Adam Harman, we packed the gear into the car and drove off down to Hever Castle. I blame his infectious positivity for making me sign up to these madcap races. The nerves always run high before a race, and as Adam was starting in the wave before me, I just had time to grab the #Sony and shoot a couple of snaps before the start of my wave. The photos of me puffing my way around the course are from the official photographers on the day.
At the start of the race, the weather was perfect, overcast cool and no wind. Two hours in, the sun had come out and the temperature was in the high 20s C, which made the 10k run very hard going indeed.
My finish time was 03:14:44. My excuse for the slower time? Well, I had a pretty good one actually. I got a blow out puncher on my front tire about half a mile from the end of the cycle section, so I had to run to complete this section. Running is my least favoured sport and in cycle shoes, with a bike, it was not ideal.
And why am I posting this in 2019? Well in September 2017 we had just started a massive house renovation and extension project which didn’t get finished until February/March of this year. I was heavily involved in the project management throughout and on top of keeping the business going, I had neither the time, inclination or energy to keep the training up to a level that is required. You might also notice that the blog posts stopped around this time for similar reasons.
However, the building project is behind us, I have paid the exorbitant fee and my name is down for Hever Castle September 2020… So watch this space.