Contributor:  Luke Harvey (15-19 age group, TreX Enduro, 19 September 2015)

Well the day started a bit later than usual, leaving home at 5:30 am. It was Trex_Enduro_2015-20150919-IMG_2804an hour’s drive to Murrenbong and transition/rego closed at 7:30. I was given slightly different gear whilst registering, instead of sticking your number around the seat post, it was placed on the handlebars, and there were also no helmet stickers. My race began at 8:33 and I began my warm up around 8am, as I was doing the long course enduro. The event was a lot different to an on road triathlon, and it was also a format I have never done before. Format was supposed to be 350 swim/10km cycle/4km run x2, however I took a slight detour on the swim making it about 500m due to turning at the wrong buoy. No one to blame but myself, however I did recover to still come second out of the water.

I had a slower transition than usual as I had to put on a camelback, my joggers (I haven’t got clip-ins for MTB) and helmet. Going into the ride I wasn’t sure what to expect, however I soon found out. It was mostly single track, which was dry, hilly and extremely rough. I decided to take the first lap slow as I took in all the technical parts and memorised the course for the second lap. I was lucky enough to only have to pass very few people on the single tracks, and passed most of them on the wide fire road linking two sections of the course. The trails are some of the best that I have ridden and I was keen for the second lap of the cycle. Having memorised the course, the second lap was a lot easier and I put less effort into peddling and more effort into technique and line choice. I mustn’t have been doing to well as I was being shaken to pieces by all the rough ground. I got off the bike feeling comfortable and took an Endura energy gel as I started running.

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I hugely underestimated the run. I was expecting to be running along trails with a couple of hills and some mud, this was not the case. The run was following signs through uncleared trees, river beds and some very steep hills. My highlight of the run course would have to be the bog hole crossing and bomb diving into the muddy water. The run course was amazing and was more cross-country (XC) than any XC run I have ever done, including national XC.

 

By now I was feeling pretty hot and was keen to get back in the water for the second swim. I took off my wet muddy running shoes and put on my goggles before diving into the water and successfully completing the swim course without error. I climbed out of the dam and into transition where I began to catch the open wave, which had started 5minutes before me. Heading out for the cycle I hung onto the back of one of the open riders and passed him on the fire road before pulling away on the second lap. I had lots of ups and downs throughout the cycle and even managed to choke while having a drink. The cycle finished with a downhill going into transition. I was feeling good for the run and had no-one in sight so I slowed down and enjoyed all the ducking under trees, weaving through branches, jumping between rocks and bomb diving into the bog hole. The final part of the run was up a big grass hill towards the finish at the top.

Overall the race was lots of fun and the course was brilliant. Big thanks to In2Adventure and Trex for putting on such a great event, I would love to do another. I think I did quite well for my first off road triathlon as I came away with a first place finish in my age and a fifth place finish overall. In my opinion, the biggest differences between an on road and an off road triathlon would have to be the amount of people, the distances, and the different skill sets required.

Huge thank you to TRI FOR ME for entering me into this awesome event.

See Luke’s blog:  thelukeharvey.com

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September 25th, 2015 / News