Hook or by Crook Sprint

It has been a long time coming but I finally made my 1st trip to a triathlon this year. I was scheduled to do one the week before but unfortunately I was sick during the build up and didn’t have the energy to get to Schull to do the race. So my back up plan was Hook or by Crook Sprint tri in Dunmore East. This happened to be my 1st sprint tri 3 years earlier so it would be nice to go back and see how much I have improved in that time. My last test before I was going to sign up was Grant Thornton 5km in Cork City. If I felt good after that I’d sign up. I managed to achieve a 19:26 for the 5km and felt good after it and with 10 minutes to go before sign up closed I put my name down.

Now living closer to Waterford it meant I could have a bit of a lie in and not have to set the alarm since George would wake me up in plenty of time. After I packed the car and I set off. Things were looking great weather wise, the wind did pick up as I got closer to the coast but the water looked calm. After parking the car I registered and met some of the Cobh Tri Group. Of course we were all talking down our abilities for the day ahead. I had enough excuses but main thing is we were all out to enjoy ourselves.

 

My timing for the race meant there wasn’t too much hanging around. I set up transition and it was very tight but all club members were alongside each other so it meant we could create enough space for each other. I went through the set up about 10 times, making sure I didn’t forget anything. It has been so long that I should have brought a check list.
HOBC

SWIM

I haven’t done enough swimming this year so was a bit worried about how it would go. I took a good look at the buoys and new where I was going. The race started on the beach and started quicker than people expected so we all had a few seconds to catch up. I quickly got into my rhythm and knew I just had to keep going straight to reach the first turn. It was about 350m to the 1st turn and this was by far the roughest swim I had experienced. Punches, swam over, being pushed under, goggles knocked off meant I had to take a few seconds to get focused and go again. It was another 300m to the next turn and this wasn’t any better. But I took it a bit wider and knew it was a straight line to the beach again. I survived the swim, just about, to finish in 13:12. (59th out of 290 finishers). I had a time of 17:08 3 years ago.

HOBC Swim

T1

There is a big climb from the beach back to our bikes, as you ran the approx 350m zig zag path way up. I decided to take the few extra seconds to throw on the socks and off I went out on the bike. A total time of 3:05 in T1 (76th out of 290 finishers)

BIKE

Now for worst part of any race. I knew what was to come and there was a bit of wind to make it even worse. It starts with a huge descent followed by a climb back up to the main road. It was out and back course so where ever it was tough I knew it would improve on the way back. It really did take me time to get going on the bike and my calf was pinching as I pushed myself on the bike. The 1st 5km was slow and I lost a lot of time on it. The next 5km let me make up some time but I was playing it safe so that my calf wouldn’t give out to me. At the turnaround point I could knew what was to come and I was very consistent on the way back with only a few seconds between my splits. Of course the main theme of the cycle was the number of people who passed me out. Its something I’d like to try improve and it can be a bit of a downer when you see people flying past you and not being able to keep up. A quick downhill before a big climb back into T2 for a time of 42:48 for 20.5km. (140 out of 290 finishers). A great swim was followed by a very average bike. I had a time of 46:38 so a huge improvement but plenty more in me to get better

HOBC Bike

T2

Dropped off the bike and on went the runners and my 1st big mistake of the season. I ran the wrong way out of T2 which cost me at least 15 seconds. (174 out of 290 finishers)

RUN

This was a new run route so I didn’t know what to expect. But the 1st 500m was a climb up a steep hill. From here I thought it would be flat but I soon found out it wasn’t. We moved on to a dirt track which had a gradual decent. It was getting hot and at the turnaround point we faced a climb back up. It was tough on the gravel and I struggled to push the pace. The run is always a place where I can push it but the heat and course just didn’t work on the day. After we left the gravel it was the unique part of the course and we moved on to the fairway of the golf course. We were lucky it wasn’t raining because we’d have slipped our way around. There was some great views along the run course and of course it was up and down but it was almost over so I was able to go out and enjoy it. It finished on a nice hill and i had a time of 22:09

HOBC RUN

HOBC

Overall

I finished in a time of 1:22:49 (98 out of 290 finishers). Happy with that for my 1st outing of the year. I have plenty of training still to do as I hope to get my season underway. I now need to draw up my calendar for the next couple of months.

HOBC Finish

And my reward for the dayHOBC Ice

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