Option 1 - Sprint Distance
The race starts with a single lap 750 metre swim in Gosfield Lake with swimmers starting in the water and exiting via a beach area. There is a spacious transition area next to the lake, which form the focus of the race. The fast cycle course is mainly on rural roads, with a single 20km lap passing through Sible Hedingham, Blackmore End and Beazley End. This is followed by a single lap 5km run over a mixture of paths and grassland.
Option 2 - Standard Distance
The race starts with a single lap 1500 metre swim in Gosfield Lake with swimmers starting in the water and exiting via a beach area. There is a spacious transition area next to the lake, which form the focus of the race. The fast cycle course is mainly on rural roads, with two 20km laps passing through Sible Hedingham, Blackmore End and Beazley End. This is followed by a two lap 10km run over a mixture of paths and grassland.
Gosfield is to date the furthest I've travelled for a triathlon. Was it worth the journey? I'd say yes.
Registration was simple, find your number, tell the people on registration and you get your chip, numbers and stickers, you then get offered an energy bar, shirt and towel which are always great freebies!
The water temp on the day was 23C's, you know what that means! Wetsuit illegal. For most people this may induce panic, however Gosfield is probably one of the better lakes for such circumstances as it's only 5 foot at its deepest (hence why the temperature was so warm at 6 in the morning!),
The swim was a self-seeded rolling start, faster swimmers at the front, slower swimmers a the back and for the most part this worked well. Gosfield lake itself isn't overly unpleasant, despite its nickname of "duck poo lake" and the very murky water (for 5 feet deep water it's perhaps not unsurprising with 200 odd swimmers disturbing the waters), the only trouble with the lake itself is it's also used as a water sports lake and there's mini buoys which are difficult to sight, don't swim into them as it will throw you off when you look for the person who kicked you only to realise it was a small red buoy.
Out the swim into transition for the bike, with numbered racking there wasn't much to worry about.
Exiting transition onto the bike was an experience, I'm no stranger to a foot down when leaving a complex to start the bike segment, however the guy exiting transition with me apparently was, the marshals where shouting at him to stop and got louder every time, of course, in my post swim haze I was unaware they were talking to him not me and rolling down a hill and breaking sharply isn't a great mix, I did come off my bike, no damage done but needless time added on a risk better avoided, might be an idea to manage that a bit better by moving the mount line to the bottom and keeping the dismount line at the top of the rise. That aside, the Bike course was quite honestly a bit of a bitch, constantly undulating and some tough climbs, I had a terrible bike split, others not so much, whether that was experience or they're just better cyclists than I (both very plausible options) but I didn't enjoy the bike course too much, not to say it's a bad route, but I could've been a lot better prepared. Clearly user error.
The run was beautiful and quiet, along some private farm land with, the sprint option came in at 5km whereas the standard was 9km, this is because of where the loop cuts back in meaning the loop is actually 4km with 500m in and out to the loop. The run can be described as almost trail like with some roads and dirt roads and well as a bit of Theresa May and running through wheat fields.
Overall, another nice enjoyable triathlon, with a tougher than usual bike course, and a nice medal at the end and some lovely freebies, I can't really fault Born2Tri for this race!
Posted on 17.07.17