Hello Oxford Tri Family
I hope that this finds you well. Wow what a week we have had. I don’t know about you but the shorts have well and truly been out this week. I have also been fortunate to make a number of sessions this week my particular highlight being the OWS on Saturday Morning. It was great to see so many faces that are not normally around taking part in our OWS Familiarisation and skills sessions. There is a notice below about parking at Queenford Lake on Saturdays but I also just wanted to highlight that we are still after safety cover for the weekend. I have dropped the links in here for you to sign up just to make it super easy.
Looking forward to seeing a whole load of you there at the weekend. Please check out where to park and for everyone else please do have a lovely bank holiday weekend.
Burgers and Beers at the Lake Club Social
We are excited to share that we are going to be having a Burgers and Beers Social at Queensford Lake on Wednesday the 7th of June. This will involve swimming as normal 7-8pm with the BBQ and Beers afterwards (non-alcoholic drinks will also be provided). The cost will be £10 per person and this will include a minimum of 1 burger and 2 beverages, payment will be taken on the night. We would love for friends and family to join us and on this occasion, they will be able to join in the 7-8pm swim as long as they are an adult, can swim 500m unaided, have the correct kit (Tow Float and Bright Swim Cap) and sign our disclaimer.
Please sign up using this google sheet link if you are planning on joining us. And please either sign up for your guests using this link or send them the link to fill out.
If you have any questions about the event please email email@example.com
Saturday Parking at the Lake
Some of you may have seen via the Facebook group that there was a post shared with regards to parking at the lake. After some further communication with our hosts they have asked that on Saturday mornings if we could park in the designated open water swimmers carpark.
This parking can be accessed from Drayton Rd. I have included a google maps link here and included a picture below. If you are parking on gravel on Saturday mornings you are in the wrong place and will most likely be asked to move (unless you have a valid reason for parking there i.e. Blue Badge). Please, please, please follow this. We have a really good relationship with the lake and would like to keep it this way. They are more than happy for us to park in the gravel car park on the Wednesday nights.
The Roc Wales – Race Report – Hannah
What an incredible experience.
Race day started and I was a bundle of nervous energy (Hannah can vouch for just how annoying I was probably being). The drive through Snowdonia the previous day had only seemed to heighten my nerves as we drove past plenty of big hills and all I could think was, Snowdon is going to be higher than that! I was also nervous about the swim. I’ve never raced in the sea and also never experienced a mass start so was definitely a bit worried about getting kicked in the face! But before I knew it, we were getting called up to the start. We got swept up in a flood of people making their way to the start line and I found myself worryingly close to the front. Despite the near perfect swimming conditions, I never felt fully comfortable during the swim. I managed to avoid any drama in the mass start but starting so far forward meant that whenever I found a pair of feet to try and follow, they quickly disappeared off into the distance! I was just happy to turn around the final buoy and head for the beach because the swim was over and done with! A quick (and very sandy) transition and I was onto the bike. Now this is where I felt at home! I felt great making plenty of over takes (this probably says more about my swim ability than my bike ability!) and just soaking in the stunning sea views as we cruised along the coast roads. As I got to about 30k I was conscious that I would soon be scaling Snowdon so I eased off the pace slightly and span my legs out. I was feeling really good and had moved up from 80th overall out of the swim to 37th in the space of a 50k bike leg! I was ready for whatever the Watkins path had to throw at me. I had been told the first 4km were runnable and it got more technical after that so I thought how hard can it be!
Lesson learnt, do not underestimate Snowdon!
I began running up the path and immediately my calves cramped up. The combination of the incline, uneven terrain under foot and all straight off the bike made it tough and I resigned to walking a bit until my jelly legs felt a bit better! Luckily the incline reduced a bit and I was able to run again but I’d decided on a run walk strategy, running only when the incline was lower and the rocks under foot weren’t too treacherous. And then a marshall told me I was third female! I got such a buzz and began to think I could maybe hang on for a podium! I was getting into the swing of things, taking on as much water and nutrition as I could when I was walking and then I saw the ‘technical’ section everyone had warned me about. By this point my legs and back were ruined and I wondered how on earth I would make it up what looked to me like a sheer cliff face! I bumped into Henry and Charlie along the way which gave me the boost I needed to make it to the top but not without my legs and lungs screaming at me. I ran around the flag at the top and started my way down. The initial relief to be running downhill was short lived as I realised running down this technical terrain was almost as difficult as running up! I made it down without drama but probably a great deal slower than some of the guys and girls I saw throwing themselves down the mountain, clearly far more comfortable with this kind of running than I was!
I’ve never been so glad to get back on my bike as it meant snowdon was officially conquered! But what followed was what felt like the longest 50k bike I’ve ever done. My legs felt empty and I couldn’t work out whether it was a headwind all the way home or my legs were just done! I kept looking over my shoulder, certain that the lady in 4th would over take me but she never did! It was a relief to roll back into transition and absorb the amazing atmosphere down on the beach for the final 1km run along the sand. My eyes welled up as I took to the beach and the crowd started to cheer and shout, partly from relief to have made it to the finish but also pride to have completed such an awesome challenge and to claim a spot on the podium! That was the hardest thing I have ever done but I couldn’t recommend it enough for anyone wanting to take on a challenge!
Outlaw 70.3 Nottingham – Race Report – Jack
3:45 wake up and a big fuel up on overnight oats and boiled eggs. Left the hotel with what should have been a good amount of time, but traffic to Holme Pierrepont was crazy. But arrived safely and finished setting off transition.
7:00 start and took a hundred metres or two to get into a rhythm. Lovely bit of sun but managed to sight well and hung onto some strong feel several times. All the drills paid off very well. Swim was 1200 metre straight, first turn, 100 metres, second turn then 600. Up the ramp and into transition, quickly got the top half of my suit off. Socks, cycle shoes and helmet on. Ran out of T1 and quickly onto the bike.
The cycle started with a short perimeter loop of the lake and out onto the roads of Nottingham. The two-part bike loop was flat and fast and allowed for plenty of overtaking. Hats off to the organisers for a really well run course with smooth roads. As promised there were a few decent climbs but punctuated by nice descents allowed to get back to full throttle. Fed pretty well through the north loop, up to 33 miles and onto the southern loop. A quick 10 mile segment with yet more flat, straight and open roads to get more power down.
Was up to 85km at 02:55, but the final 5km was lumpy, bumpy and pot-holed.
Anyhow, safely into T2, bike racked, helmet and shoes off, running shoes, cap and glasses on and loaded with nutrition I turned my attention to the half marathon.
I started off well, with a quick couple of kilometres, but then the heat started to take its toll. Fuelled well over the next 30 minutes or so then adopted a run -walk strategy. All the runners felt the heat, but positive attitudes and amazing feed stations – 10 in total – got us all through. Despite the rough conditions, managed a sub 2′ split which I was very pleased with.
06:06:58 in total
01:57:45 half marathon
Apart from the run, all segments were faster than Cotswold 113 last June.
Along with the amazing organisation by Outlaw for this race, I wanted to thank Oxford Tri for all the great coaching this last year or so, and to my dad for supporting during the race and during all my training.
See the official calendar for full info and sign up links.
Saturday 27th May: Social OWS – Queensford Lake @ 08:00
Tuesday 30th May: Member Lead Social Run – Headington Hill @ 19:00
Tuesday 30th May: Coached Swim – Thame Pool @ 20:00
Wednesday 31st May: Social OWS – Queensford Lake @ 19:00
Wednesday 31st May: Coached Swim – Radley Pool @ 19:30
Thursday 1st June: Coached Run Session – Horspath Athletic Track @ 19:00
Friday 2nd June: Strength and Conditioning Online @ 07:15
Friday 2nd June: Coached Swim – Kidlington Pool @ 19:00