A fairly quiet week all in all, I was pretty much doing short or easy sessions, with two runs and turbo sessions and four swims. This was to keep the legs moving but without taking too much out of them so I would arrive at Sunday ready.
Sunday was time for my second tri of the year at Darwen in Lancashire. A 600m pool swim, 23k bike and 8k run.
The weather for the event was overcast but dry, but it was quite windy as well. It was also the first trip out for the finally built Sigma. This was a frame I bought back in 2002 after my last Ironman and never got round to building. I'd been collecting bits for a while now and only put it on the turbo in the week to see how it felt.
The unusually longer sprint swim of 600m passed ok with no issues, 11:03 which I am really pleased with. It was a long run round to transition then out onto the bike which started with a short downhill to a set of lights that are triggered by car weight so you had to get off and walk round the pavement onto the main road before setting off. I was then held up by slow moving traffic, but when this finally cleared it was down onto the aero bars. It wasn't long however before a left turn off the flat brought the first and toughest climb of the day. It was a bit of a drag, and with only a 23 on the back I was unsure if I was going to make it in one go but I ground it out and I must admit that out of the saddle the bike accelerates nicely. A couple of niggles that I encountered on the bike need looking at, at one point I was struggling to get into the big ring so the cables need a bit of tweaking. I also had an issue with the Speedfil drinking bottle, or more precisely the bite valve on the tube. In the end I had to remove the rubber end completely so I could get a drink, I also need to look at the positioning of the tube.The bike was amazing on the flats and downhills and it soon dealt with the course in 52:48.
Transition was quick and it was straight out onto the run. It started on tarmac, but soon moved onto hard pack track, all of it climbing upwards. The run was more of a fell race than anything else, but conditions underfoot were good so even in racing flats it wasn't a problem. Once I had reached the tower it was a steep and fast decent and I put my past fell running experience to good use, actually passing someone (who I will add, was drafting on the bike so I took great delight in whooping his ass). No denying the run was tough, but the best part of the day.
Total time 2:02 and a happy chappy