A number of Optima’s triathletes raced at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in London’s Hyde Park this weekend with our very own Chris Owens becoming World Champion in the 60-64 Male AG category. Here’s what they had to say about their individual races.
Result: World Champion – 1st place, 60-64 Male AG
Result: Overall 456th position in the Open category
Arrived in Hyde Park nice and early to get into the atmosphere, getting in the mood by watching the Elite Women race. Inspiring stuff. Then took the muddy walk up to transition to get ready, worrying a little about the conditions underfoot for T1 and T2. Went through preparation and warm up before setting off for the Serpentine ready for start. My aims – to match my overall London time of six weeks ago, to break 30 minutes for the swim and to get a good run. Into the water – felt very comfortable and really noticed the difference not starting with 300 people as at London. Felt strong and sped my stroke up towards the end, then out for T1.
T1 and cycle went well and then to T2 and the run. Half way into lap 1 and my calf started to hurt – so had to slow and rock back a little. Managed to keep going with the support pushing me on through the laps. I knew it was going to be close to my London time and ended up hobbling over the line bang on the same time – 2hr42. Happy with the overall time, happy with the swim (28 mins) and bike (1hr6) and left to wonder what could have been if I hadn’t strained my calf. Overall 456th position in the Open category, although after T2 I was in 218th… Pretty clear what I need to work on for next season…
Result: 9th place 50-54 Male AG
A fantastic day’s racing and absolutely great to see so many people taking part and having the crowds pushing you on right around the course.
For me personally the low came at around 8am when I discovered the swim was cut to 750m which took me a while to come to terms with. The highs were coming out of the water first and then the tremendous support as people cheered you on right around the course, particularly on the run where total strangers called out your name on each lap and I actually started to listen out for them at certain points!
Not sure if you want/need anything more. Brief race points:
Freezing waiting in the pens to start. Nice smooth swim but totally blinded by the sun on the long back leg. Looooong transition and difficult to remove wetsuit on a muddy slope. Race number got torn off and had to go back to retrieve – why were the organisers too tight to splash out on number tats? Nice cycle but had to watch the state of those roads up near Tower Hill! Fantastic run course and support.
Result: 28th place, 25-29 Female AG
I loved every minute of the world champs in hyde park, the crowd support was unbelievable just like the olympics a year ago! Despite the transition area being a little like glastonbury pop festival and the swim being cut short the whole event was very well organised and the GB team all performed brilliantly.
My race (24-29) was super competitive not helped by all the draffting going on during the bike but i did my best. Very proud of all the other optima guys who did amazingly well!
Result: 24th place, 30-34 Female AG
Incredible experience, I enjoyed the bike course so much I was tempted to go round a third time.
Result: 6h place, 30-34 Female AG
It was amazing even just being there and not like any other race with the number of familiar faces that were there. It goes without saying that it was a massive honour to compete in such an atmosphere with so many familiar faces (that I’m sure we were all grateful for!) and something that will be remembered forever.
Result: 19th place, 20-24 Male AG
Report to come.