Monday, 25 April 2011

Lessons learnt

It can be said that there is no such thing as a bad race only a race from which many lessons can be learned. This was true for quite a few of us at the Thames Turbo Sprint Race 1 (part of the London Triathlon League) on Easter Monday. It was a very strong field with names and faces that you see featured in triathlon magazines with bikes you normally only see on the glossy pages as well.

Lesson 1. We need more veterans involved in our London Triathlon League races. We had only one veteran racing. Thankfully he finished the event. Nice one Simon Austin! You must introduce yourself one day. Unfortunately none of us could put a face to the name. It would be great to see more vets racing for the club to ensure we always meet the London Triathlon League rules but it's also good for the club's depth to have a number different age groups racing.

Lesson 2. Make a list of all the kit you need to race and check it off as you pack it. Dan forgot his goggles. Thankfully Seb had a spare pair but it is always better to have your own because the correct fit is guaranteed. The early hours of the morning prior to an event is not the best time for packing. Claire Tomlinson is our resident expert on making lists for packing. May be we'll get her to run a tutorial!

Lesson 3. Practise your transitions! Dan nearly broke a brand new cycling shoe getting it all wrong attempting to mount his time trial bike coming out of T1. Incidentally he had not ridden his time trial bike for months (could be another lesson in itself).

Lesson 4. Know the race course: Both Seb and Dan took a wrong turn on the bike. Seb went on to run a very respectable 8km. Err, the run leg was only 5km! He completed an extra loop on the run. Dan set a new British record of 10mins for 5km before realising he had missed a loop of the run. Amanda went cross-country to the finish line before realising she had taken a wrong turn and had to double back to get back on course.

Ideally you would have a recce of the course prior to the event. I have no doubt that this would have helped on Monday but with a very early start time it just was not possible to ride or walk/run the course prior to the event start. Was it a problem with maps and race directions, signage or marshaling? I'll let those who competed debate that one.

Lesson 4. Be nice to the marshals: Amanda picked up a warning for littering when she tried to 'give a marshal her used gel packaging' on course. Karl and I picked up a six pack of For Goodness Shakes by smiling sweetly and telling a marshal what a great event they put on! Amanda did nothing wrong but it was perhaps taken the wrong way by the marshal. Some people were penalised for abusing marshals, no one from LFTC. I would like to think no one in the club would do this no matter how upset you might be with the marshaling.

Lesson 5. Don't break the road rules. They are there for your safety and the safety of others. None of our club members broke the rules but some competitors did and they were quite rightly disqualified.

Well done to everyone that did compete and got around the course correctly especially Kristina who completed her first triathlon!

This weekend sees a focus on technique in the swim session including open water skills. You will need fins and a pull buoy so please don't forget. The run session is relatively short but fast with 400m reps and some sprints to give you that ability to kick in the home straight and get that PB.

See you Saturday. Tim (LFTC Coach)

PS. Sorry you kept popping up as an example Dan!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The Easter weekend Saturday sessions

What a massive success our second ever club organised race was on Saturday! Not only did our aquathlon sell out we also had a very impressive junior race, a great turnout at prize giving and the whole event ran as smooth as silk. A special thank you to Dan, his organisational skills amazing, I am sure he has a future in event management should he want it. Look out Human Race and IMG! Thank you also to all those who volunteered on the day (and there were a lot of you). I'm sure you have heard it before but these events can't happen without the right volunteers and I think you all did a fantastic job. The feedback I received about the volunteers on the course was extremely positive. Of course we must give our club mates who competed on the day a big slap on the back too as they put in some fine performances and did the club proud!

It's back to training as usual on Saturday morning. We will be using fins and pull buoys during the technique set so please bring your own kit. The Lido does have a limited supply of pull buoys but you will need your own fins. We'll be using the CSS that we calculated last time we were in the Lido to help split the lanes and pace the main set. The run session will follow and this week we will be heading down to Hackney Marshes for the 5km Park Run. Then to finish off we will have a well deserved coffee and almond croissant at la Bouche!

This Monday sees the club competing in another London League event. If anyone feels like a trip to Hampton Court on Monday to lend support to the team feel free to join us. It does start extremely early so I will understand if people pass on the invitation to support us. Perhaps seeing Dan and Amanda making a return will intice you down there! The race is organised by Thames Turbo and takes place at the Hampton Pool. The swim in the 36m open air pool is followed by a 20km on road cycle route and finally a 5km run through Bushy Park. I've not been to Hampton Court Palace before so could be up for a picnic in the palace gardens after the race if the weather looks good.

See you Saturday. Oh, did I mention the fins? You must bring them! Tim (LFTC Coach)

Sunday, 17 April 2011


Our 2nd Aquathlon took place in life-affirming spring sunshine yesterday - our huge thanks to all those who helped make it an excellent event.

Well done to the race winners, who are listed below. A full list of results can be found by clicking here

(Numbers in parentheses are Swim + Transition, Run, Total)

Junior: Female

1st: Emily Downey (2:07, 5:13, 7:20)

2nd: Elizabeth Kaethner (2:33, 5:13, 7:46)

3rd: Tara Lewis (2:57, 5:09, 8:06)

Junior: Male

1st: Jay Downey (2:37, 4:41, 7:18)

2nd: Max Macauley (2:55, 4:59, 7:54)

3rd: Zach Stroman (3:08, 5:00, 8:08)

Female (under 30)

1st: Ellen Greaves (7:17, 19:48, 27:05) Overall Female Winner

2nd: Clare Shakespeare (7:35, 24:26, 32:01)

3rd: Peppi-Marie Holder (7:53, 24:17, 32:10)

Female (Under 40)

1st: Stephanie Robson (8:42, 19:30, 28:12)

2nd: Sophie Hemsworth (7:32, 22:22, 29:52)

3rd: Fay Israsena (7:45, 22:47, 30:32)

Female 40+

1st: Dorothy Zerdin (7:35, 23:01, 30:36)

2nd: Lucy Fern (9:32, 24:39, 34:11)

3rd: Jane Allen (12:08, 24:43, 36:51)

Male (under 30)

1st: Danny Russell (6:49, 15:40, 22:29) Overall Male Winner

2nd: Paul Allen (6:37, 18:20, 24:57)

3rd: Mark Giddon (7:04, 18:05, 25:09)

Male < 40

1st: Scott McKenna (6:11, 18:58, 25:09)

2nd: Joe Dale (8:28, 16:47, 25:15)

3rd: Alex Elferink (7:24, 18:49, 26:13)

Male 40+

1st: Guy Holbrow (7:07, 18:09, 25:16)

2nd: Brian Longman (6:29, 19:21, 25:50)

3rd: Mark O’Donoghue (12:01, 16:10, 28:11)

Monday, 11 April 2011

A bit of everything.

There are a whole lot of club related goings on that I could blog about this week but I'll keep it short and sweet as time is of the essence!

The club's first training camp was a huge success. I think we had just the right combination of great fun with plenty of laughs and silliness and some great training sessions too. A couple of things that really impressed me were Claire Tomlinson finishing her first ever triathlon with a fine sprint finish, the group that descended the infamous Tabeyesco hill only to turn around and complete the 10km climb back up just for fun and the camaraderie shown by all those on the trip whether it was supporting club mates in races or helping keep the group together on long rides in rather testing conditions (read howling winds!). I am sure next year's training camp will be even bigger and better for those that want to join in next time around.

Over the weekend the club also competed in our first (and the toughest) London Triathlon League event. A big thank you to those not competing who rode out to support the team and made so much noise it was almost embarrassing! But when you have to go up a steep hill no less that 27 times during the race it really helps to have the support we had at the top of the climb. It was great to see everyone finish and there were some very impressive performances given how tough the course was and the level of competition. Nice work everyone who competed and supported at the Dragon Slayer on Sunday! I also think our club kit looked the best out of all those clubs competing (nice work Guy).

This week the Tuesday run session will move back to the ash track in Victoria Park. If you are not familiar with the location of the track it's not too hard to find. If you enter the park from the gates beside the Britannia Pub and continue straight ahead on the wide path you will pass cricket nets, tennis courts and the cafe on your left and you will see a fenced area on your right just after the cafe. That is the track. To attend the session you must be a paying member of the club. This Tuesday you will have a few options. Mick will be using a 2.4km time trial to help estimate VO2 max and predict 10km time. The session will include a thorough warm up prior to the time trial and appropriate cool down. We will also run an interval session for those that do not want to participate in the time trial. If you competed over the weekend then we will keep the intensity and volume low to allow adequate recovery.

Before Tuesday I would like you to consider what your goal 5km and 10km times are for the year (either as part of a multisport event or a running event). We will use these times to guide our pace during the upcoming interval sessions.

In other news Chrissie Wellington won Ironman South Africa placing 8th overall and posting the fastest run split of the day (yes faster than any of the men's field) and setting yet another Ironman world best time! In Sydney for the first of the ITU World Championship Series, there were crashes and falls aplenty and if you're looking for a little motivation check out Jonathan Brownlee's second place and Javier Gomez recovering from a crash to go on to win the race here!

See you at the LFTC Aquathlon. Your support of the event is much appreciated! Tim (LFTC Coach)