Lancaster University Sprint Tri: No way, Hurricane Jose

Simon Vaukins
Lancaster University Triathlon

‘I somehow formulated the desperate idea that I could lean the saddle on the seat post and just grip it tightly with my thighs keeping it in place. Of course I soon learnt that it was physically impossible to do so while having to move your thighs to pedal. It was also way too dangerous as I had no stability and found my self wobbling further and further into the road.’

Holgate, Can’t Swim, Can’t Train, Can’t Stop, p. 229

What would Andy Holgate do? How quickly the story of the broken seat clamp and the picnic blanket came to mind when my own seat clamp came loose over a speed bump, in the lashing down rain at 12:00 today.

I knew it was due to be one of those rare swim, swim, swim triathlons when I woke up this morning, ready to take on my first tri since Kendal sprint in September last year, but with Hurricane Jose lashing the American coast there wasn’t really to much to complain about; apart from the fact that I was so unfamiliar with a swimming pool that I thought the roof of the gym had leaked, I wasn’t quite sure where I’d left my bike and Hobbit had forgotten to bring me some armbands.

So they we were, all huddled around in the warm trying to keep dry before having a cold bath and going for a quick ride and a run. I’ll never understand why triathletes, me included, complain about having to run in the rain! So, the swim went as well as could have been expected. The good news is I can still do it and an eight minute swim was only slightly off the pace. Then it was into transition to pick up the bike and begin to dry off a bit in the glorious sunshine. Sorry, I meant to say get even wetter than an otter’s pocket.

I got out of transition pretty quick, up the hill and round the roundabout and started to warm up. I heard a bit of a crack when I hit the speed cushion at the infamous ducks crossing, and things became a bit looser between my legs than they should have been. Having avoided an impromptu examination from my seat post, I knew all was lost; there wasn’t a picnic blanket in sight and I’d lost at least one important nut.

So that’s that really, other than a bit of a walk-of-shame back to transition and poodle around the run course in the mud. Two thirds of a triathlon completed in 2017, so let’s hope 2018 brings a little more success.

Next: the Ultra Tour of Edinburgh. It’s just running, so what can go wrong?

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